ee archive: eesrilanka.wordpress.com
“Before you study the economics, study the economists!”
Blinded Economists & their Ratings,
Monkey Armies & the Steel Makka
e-Con e-News 27 September – 03 October 2020
• This ee exposes where our present ruling oligarchs come from: the role of these local “Ceylonese” collaborators with colonialism, who got their Portuguese, Dutch and English slave names from the slavemasters they defended. Contrary to claims that these “Ceylonese” made their money from arrack, it appears they were heavily involved in the dispossession of the peasantry and the introduction of coffee plantations. This issue also continues to highlight the role of rural industrial collectives in the miracle that has become China.
• Advocating Coup? • Transparent Chauvinism • Stand By! • The Money behind Moody’s Moods
US-funded thinktank Advocata, chaired by a leading Indian merchant-family scion, is still promoting international terrorista, Ricardo Hausman of Harvard University. Hausman’s been advocating coups d’etat against governments around the world! Hausman and Harvard were paid by racketeer and ‘revolutionary of color’ George Soros to advise Yahapalanaya. Advocata’s panel discussion this week, also included old CIA ‘hand’ on Sri Lanka, another “Professor”, Mick Moore. Blunt artillery blatantly brought to the fore. Vultures smell blood?
• On Monday, October 6, the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, aka the Quad, namely Australia, India, Japan and the US, will meet in Tokyo. As US President Trump signaled white supremacist forces: “Stand Back, Stand by!” Joe Biden, and local US embassy officials, who wish to accomplish our lynching with even more deadly forces, would be too politesse to use such words.
• World-Bank-linked Transparency International’s caricature of a corrupt politician/thief, is a slightly shady fat man wearing white ‘national’, displayed on its billboards around us. Yet the biggest thieves in the country are more likely slim, white or invisible, and if they have to wear anything, don suits and ties. Corporate corruption has no compare to the state’s misdemeanors, but why should the media advertize that? This week, JP Morgan, also backing issues of national bonds around the world, just got fined only $920million for 10,000s of illegal trades. They got off easy!
• Moody’s got caught fixing its ratings to influence the budget and force Sri Lanka into an IMF stranglehold. Moody’s ICRA is linked to Indian state banks and US asset managers linked to Unilever. Fitch Ratings is owned by Hearst Communications which publishes the magazine Cosmopolitan. The SL distributor for Cosmopolitan is Capital Media (Echelon, EconomyNext etc).
• What Happens to Dreams Deferred? • Presidential Parachutes
Millions of Lankans watch warily while bankers and their rating agencies, merchants and their smugglers, media and their disinformation circuits, lawyers and their handcuffing clauses, stall attempts to steer the country through onrushing tempests, treacherous shoals and circling sharks. Naysayers who once backed massmurder in the 1970s/80s and bondscams in the 2010s, are crying, “Anarchy’, “Despotism” etc. What happens when the sweet nectar of euphoria turns to the bitter gall of dreams deferred? They shall soon find out.
Media choirs are baring their whitest fangs to pressure an unelected Supreme Court to undo a government with a powerful mandate from the people. The US State Department, their English and Euro poodles, their rogue UN bureaucrats, are animating their dollar-drunk civil society to fully display to an entire country the contemptuous depths to which their claimed ‘commitment to democracy’ can plummet, busy attempting to split the Rajapakse family and the ruling coalition.
Threats froth from the US military, their regional brown sahibs, related monkey armies and local feline mercenaries. NY and London bankers, their US Treasury, their ventriloquist dummies (WB, IMF ADB, etc) & their rating agencies, provide their fiscal coups de grâce, claiming we owe them for odious debts that finance their puppet oligarchy, their luxurious lifestyles, debts taken to pay for their machinations, machines and experts.
• President Should Parachute into the Economics Departments of the Universities. Professors are publicly mumbling out a muck of bull. GR must try to save future generations of students.
One eminent professor of economics (e-con!) at the University of Colombo, Sirimal Abeyratne baldly claims ‘China never considered its home market. It only focused on exports. If the home market was too small for China, why should SL bother about 21 million people?’, he told this week’s BMICH 71st National Day of China celebration.
The Chinese present probably resorted to diplomatic silence – which amounts to ‘humor the barbarian’! No present-day Chinese with their heads on their Mao suits, let alone a Marxist-Leninist, would utter such idiocy. The home market is so vital, when the US speaks on ‘human rights’ in China, the Chinese translate it as, ‘We plan to sell at least one Coca-Cola to 1.3 billion people every day!’’
Abeyratne then tweeted: “China is 71. PRC was born on October 1, 1949 – one year after SL was born as an independent country. China commenced market policies in 1978 – one year after SL did so. Today which country has a success story?”
To which a wag retorted: “SL only became a republic in 1972 – 50 years after China. New China in 1949 marketized while retaining state ownership of finance, land and heavy industry, alongside capital controls and a fixed exchange rate. That’s the difference between China’s success and SL’s failure!”
How did such e-cons become professors? Why make facile comparisons with other countries? China first set up machine-building industry across the country, to feed other smaller industries, and ensured their people were fully fed.
By the way, next year is the 100th anniversary of the Communist Party of China. Another Colombo e-con prof may date it different. He, this week, falsely told students the Russian Revolution happened in 1914, & the USSR built Sapugaskanda oil refinery. Worse, he teaches Marx said “class society comes after capitalism”! Near its very kickoff, The Communist Manifesto of Marx and Engels states:
“The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles. Free human and slave, patrician and plebeian, lord and serf, guild-master and journeyman, in a word, oppressor and oppressed, stood in constant opposition to one another, carried on an uninterrupted, now hidden, now open fight, a fight that each time ended, either in a revolutionary reconstitution of society at large, or in the common ruin of the contending classes.”
• Singapore’s Economics of Opium & MassMurder
ee again recalls the flying visit of Singapore’s first PM Lee Kwan Yew to their national university (NUS). It was a few years after Singapore had separated from Malaysia in 1965, and Lee asked why the University had not done any studies on the repercussions of separation. When Lee had first entered the auditorium, professors had ignored his presence, until he shouted out they should stand when a head of state enters. They all shot up as if to prove they were still homo erectus, tho invertebrate.
President GR could ask ‘our’ e-cons to declare which countries, private banks and corporations they actually work for? Why only ask politicians to declare their assets? How many studies have these e-con departments done on effecting a transition from Lanka’s abject colonial dependence on multilateral loans from US, English and Euro banks, promising access to their precious markets, to a more just linkage with Asia, Africa & the rest of the Americas? Have our e-cons studied how we may develop a national economic plan for industrialization? Instead they nurse wetdreams of tenure with the WB, IMF or ADB, and for paid sabbaticals to marinate in the sauces and sewers of the belly of the beast.
Industrialized Singapore and its leadership are usually used to bang us on the head with moral sermons – like on the ‘rule of law’, even though many a corporate criminal, Arjuna Mahendran, etc, still wanted by Sri Lanka, are provided extended vacations there.
Singapore, which is not a country but a city state, is a fortress for Europe, US and Japanese multinationals, to steal the home markets of the countries surrounding it, including Sri Lanka. Lee is well known for stating, Singapore had “hitched a ride on the expanding world economy”. This was perhaps a euphemism for Singapore helping US bombers to refuel there on their way to destroy SE Asia. But the 1974-5 recession and Vietnam’s communist victory “caused a turn-around in Singapore’s foreign economic policy. The precarious buoyancy of Singapore was at this time soberly reflected on by Lee KY, who then sponsored a revival of ASEAN as a framework for regionalism.” (SBD de Silva)
Singapore – originating as a white fortress for England’s opium & bullion trade from London to India to China and back to London – is now the world’s largest ship refueling centre, importing energy from west Asia then re-exporting to SL, etc. How long can it do this, if we start relying on our own energy sources, let alone on our 103 rivers?
• It’s not only shallow e-cons embedded in universities. The CBSL governor reminded (see last ee), economists in Central Banks have long (last 30 years) been in thrall to neoliberalism. Tho ee would add, e-cons have been in thrall for the last 100s of years to whatever flavor capitalists demand of them. The dominant approach in economics is Neoclassical theory, which only looks at individuals and exchange. The Classical theory of Smith, Ricardo and Marx looked at classes and production.
And of course it’s not only e-cons and Economics Departments that are rotten to the core. Since ee is dedicated to exposing economists, they should explain exactly what it is they’re doing. But all they do is echo the dictat of the WB and IMF, focusing on the corruption of the state, and not the MNCs dominating our world.
Then there’s other university departments. Just as London this week again chose the leadership of Colombo’s Anglican Church, large owner of SL real-estate – the English Departments, enamored of England’s decadent landed gentry and their consumptive airs, still fail to link English to England’s industrialization of the method of robbing and enslaving our world.
As ee enters its 3rd year, with this 131st straight weekly issue – launched to honor the legacy of SBD de Silva – this next fabulous 19thC children’s story is dedicated to him. He would’ve loved it.
• The Magnificent Art of Fleas & Machines • Serendib
ee’s Arts Correspondent sashayed to the ‘International’ Bookfair, and serendipitously (see below) picked up the children’s satire Lefty by Nikolai Leskov. The tale takes place right after Russia’s defeat of Napoleon’s multicultural “12-tongue” army, and the 1815 Vienna Congress where Europe ‘donated’ Sri Lanka to the English, after England’s spies had just bought off a coterie of montane Sinhale’s rulers.
Lefty is a story, based on real-life characters, of a visit to England by a Russian Tsar (all their Tsars, in fact, all Anglo-Euro royalty, were German!) The English wish to ‘shock and awe’ the Tsar to their side by bragging about their industrial marvels. They show off to the Tsar their factories and warehouses. to prove they’re “much better at everything than the Russians and were thus able to boast”.
The Tsar’s sidekick is a homesick Cossack, who doesn’t like anything foreign, but the English, get advance intelligence about this. The Tsar acts diplomatic, wishing to learn from the English, but the Cossack is not impressed and takes every opportunity to show the Russians are better.
At a museum, the English show the Tsar minerals and insects stolen from across the world, and give him a gift on a tray. The gift cannot be seen by the eye, only with a microscope. It is a clockwork flea, made of steel, with a hole in its stomach for an equally almost-invisible key to wind it up to make it fly, do pirouettes and quadrilles! The Tsar immediately gifts them a million: they can have in silver or banknotes, but the English don’t trust banknotes. The Russians then notice there’s no box to carry the flea. The English then make them buy a box, which pisses off the Cossack, considering it another English swindle: “You always get a box with everything you buy.” The Cossack is so angry he pockets the microscope. But the Tsar is impressed and calls English workers the best. The Cossack explains it’s because English workers had rules for everything, including science, and also lived better.
Back in Russia, the old Tsar dies, and the new Tsar recalls the Cossack to explain the now-rusty almost-dead flea, who nonetheless when wound up can still dance. The Cossack, not wishing to let the Tsar get too impressed, tells him that the craftsmen of Tula could do a better job than the English. He then gives the flea to the best Tula gunsmiths, one being Lefty, and threatens them to come up with something better. The Tula workers point out, English art “has a lot of sense to it” and get to work. After many threats, bullying and beatings, the workers finally present the flea to the Cossack, who rushes it back to Tsar, but they can’t figure out what’s different. Lefty is then kidnapped to the palace, and explains: even tho workers can see it with their trained eyes, the Tsar needs the largest microscope in the world: The microscope reveals they have attached tiny military boots to the flea’s feet!
Still, the Tsar is thoroughly impressed and sends Lefty to London to show off Russian prowess. The English wish to buy the worker off, and after getting him drunk, ask him how he learned his craft. Lefty just says he read Russia’s own holy books. The English explain he’d be much better if he learned mathematics, and point out, “Although you’re very clever with your hands, you didn’t realize that a tiny machine like the flea is calculated with great precision and can’t carry the shoes you put on. That’s why the flea doesn’t jump and do dances anymore.” The worker responds, “There’s no arguing… we’re not very strong in learning but we’re loyal to our country.”
The English offer to give Lefty a better education, but the worker says he doesn’t like English food – also thinking they may poison him – and he misses his parents. The English say they can remit money to his parents, besides, the English are Protestants too. But Lefty says Russian gods are more interesting and even cry, have fatter bibles, with their own additions to things the Bible left out, and Russians have many holidays not just on Sundays.
The English then offer him a wife. But Lefty says he doesn’t like English women, they hide much with too many clothes, and insists on returning to Russia. The English still show off their factories to him, and how well the worker lives, dresses and works: The English worker “didn’t work from fear of the whip, but had been properly taught and understood what he was doing. The multiplication tables hung in front of every worker, and at hand he had a slate: whenever a craftsman did anything he looked at the multiplication tables and checked what he doing with understanding”, writing on the slate to work out problems.
But Lefty thinks Russian workers are smarter, but is most interested in their guns. The story ends with Lefty being mistreated when he returns to Russia, yet, as he lies dying on a winter street, his brain split open by being thrown out of a hospital window, he begs, “Tell the Tsar that the English don’t clean their musket barrels with brick-dust.” The backstory suggests the Russians lost the Crimean War (1853-6) due to bad armaments, the children book’s notes explaining: “economically and militarily backward Russia was defeated by the English, French and Turkish Coalition”.
Perhaps those who advocate handicraft for Sri Lankan workers, may one day advocate catapults for the Sri Lankan army, as ecologically sound!
This beautifully illustrated book, bought at the bookfair from the Communist Party’s Progressive Books stall, is based on Leskov’s skaz (folktale) Being the Tale of Cross-eyed Lefty of Tula & the Steel Flea. What caught the ee correspondent’s eye, other than the razor-sharp political satire, was the description of workers and work, as well as technology. This 1881 book describes a microscope with a magnification up to 5 million times, like those now used in nanotechnology, and the hero’s nickname Levsha (Lefty) became a Russian nickname for an exceptionally skilled folk artisan. The book has romantic echoes – it laments the loss of “artistic daring” of artisans, and onset of machines, yet notes, workers using machines are treated and paid better, and have an easier life.
One wonders how many Lankan or other books actually depict modern work and workers’ lives, let alone the working of machines, mostly imported. ‘Production culture’ (rather than the dominant consumption culture) doesn’t need to be officially forbidden on tv and radio, for they have no idea. Most of the glossy books at the ‘international’ fair appeared to be translations of the worst of misleading white literature. Clearly, the ink, paper, stationery, equipment, advertising materials and food sold, were predominantly ‘imported’ tastes.
So perhaps it’s appropriately called an international bookfair, for national it ain’t. Held in the mud of the intermonsoonal rains, because it’s locked into the imperialist industrial cycle, the production of multinational corporations, and their school year beginning in September.
Leskov was Chekov’s favorite novelist. As for Leskov’s diplomatic treatment of the English, much Russian literature, especially the anti-Tsarist genre, was promoted by the English via the London-based Alexander Herzen, ‘father of Russian socialism’. Herzen’s socialism was of the agrarian populist/romantic/ anarchist/nihilist variety, sponsored by Rothschild bankers. A type of socialism which Lenin, leader of the USSR, heavily criticized, relating it to the romanticism of Sismondi, the first great critic of industrial capitalism, during its first great crisis in the 1820s. A type of socialism which dominates Sri Lanka’s Left and nationalist movement.
• The English word ‘serendipitous’ from Serendib (from Sinhale) means, “occurring or discovered by chance in a happy or beneficial way”, from 1754: coined by Horace Walpole, suggested by The 3 Princes of Serendip, from an Iranian fairytale, where the heroes “were always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things they were not in quest of”. Of course, prior to their invasion of Lanka in 1795, the English were fighting the French off the seas of Trincomalee for decades! Before that there was Knox and Pybus. So no ‘accidental discoveries’ here!
Such coinage much sounds like the English claim for their empire, “We seem, as it were, to have conquered and peopled half the world in a fit of absence of mind.” They never state their real plans or acknowledge their bloody history. Nor will their media, still today.
‘Serendipitous’ to us could very well mean, ‘Giving our wealth away without knowing…’
A1. Reader Comments –
• Please Check Facts • ee’s Comments Engaging
A2. Quotes of the Week
• EU Ambassador at a Loss on Imports • Moody’s Timing • US Says Hell to Pay • Who was the Bald Man?
A3. Random Notes –
ee Wrong on Early Plans for Machine Building? • Why didn’t Importers Invest? • Premature Postcolonial Portents
B. ee Focus
B1. Native Profits in Coffee Plantations vs Arrack Renting – Pathirana & Aluthge
B2. On China’s Industrialization Path: the Winners – Wei Pan
C. News Index
A1. Reader Comments
• ee thanks Readers who send articles of interest. Please excerpt or summarize what is important about any article sent, or your comments, and place the e-link at the end. It’s better to email.
• “Please check your facts in connection to HA de S Gunasekera’s 5-Year Plan, 1972-6. A cursory glance would have established that SBD de Silva’s contention about industrial machinery in the 5-year plan was wrong.” (see Random Notes)
• “ee’s introductory commentaries appear more engaging”
A2. Quotes of the Week_
• “It is going to be very delicate to explain to European traders that Sri Lanka just wants to stop more imports from EU” – EU Ambassador Denis Chaibi
• “It is puzzling that Moody’s has downgraded Sri Lanka on the eve of this repayment, which seems similar to the previous premature and reckless downgrades by rating agencies in the immediate aftermath of the end of the internal conflict in 2009 and during the political impasse at end 2018.”
• “A US military presence in Sri Lanka would enable the US to advance a so-called ‘island chain strategy’ to control the sea lanes of the Indian Ocean, which are of vital importance to China’s foreign trade. Top US officials have been threatening the SL government since last year that, unless it cooperated with the Indo-Pacific strategy, its human rights record in the war against Tamil separatists in the 2007-8 period will be held against it and there will be hell to pay.”
• “The SWRD murder involvement of Ossie Corea, Jungle Dissanayake, FC de Saram, 80 Club of Colombo should also be given a place in this conspiracy. Who was bald man wearing yellow robes who shot Somarama and ran away before police arrived at the incident?”
A3. Random Notes (‘Seeing Number in Chaos’)_
ee came in this week for sharp criticism, some of it quite valid, for criticizing the United Front government’s industrial policies as inadequate. ee admits not having access to the entire 5-Year Plan, 1972-76, instead going by pronouncements from those who worked in the Ministry of Plan Implementation, and in the Ministry of Industries, pointing to its major shortcomings.
ee drew particular retort to contention that the 5-Year Plan did not grasp the need for modern machine production: The plan however noted “No sizeable programme of industrialisation can get under way as long as all machines, spares and accessories continue to be imported… In the past, the light engineering industry was neglected, and simple types of machinery that should have been produced in Ceylon continue to be imported…
“An institution of Engineering Research and Development will be set up to examine the types of machines which can be made locally and to design prototypes for their manufacture…
“In 1973, the Steel Corporation entered into an agreement with Hindustan Machine Tools (Indian state-owned holding company under their Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises) to manufacture machine tools. This commenced in 1975. The steel foundry commenced operation also in 1975, while feasibility studies were done on an ilmenite smelting plant. Quotations were called for an electric arc furnace for Stage III. Manufacture of welding electrodes and soldering lead commenced.”
Further detailed evidence was not forthcoming. ee’s critics further provided evidence from the World Bank’s International Development Association of the quite extensive efforts made by the then-government of Sri Lanka. However, that same WB report also had this to say:
“The 5-Year Plan (1972-76) contains a program for industrial development but hitherto there has been no comprehensive statement of industrial policy. Instead, policy has emerged from a series of pronouncements over time which have provided the basis for licensing and regulating industry.
Industrial policy has been concerned with the generation of employment opportunities, small scale units, minimizing foreign exchange costs, and regional dispersion.
“For steel, textiles, engineering goods and tires, 80% of the raw materials used are imported. The management of the sector is faced with formidable difficulties; the almost total lack of locally produced raw materials, a small market, a pressing unemployment problem, a chronic shortage of foreign exchange and an economy which, in real terms, has been declining. In these circumstances, it is surprising to find that there is no comprehensive statement of policy to promote industrial development.”
Other evidence was provided by ee’s critics – but not how much of the national requirement these efforts were able to meet? The 1959 10-Year Plan also noted imports of machinery, transport miscellaneous manufactures being ~25% of total imports (adding fuels & chemicals, then ~50% of all imports). That plan also saw scheduling of the 2 stages of a proposed steel plant, tyre factory and oil refinery. Some insist that the murder of SWRD Bandaranaike was contrived to prevent this plan from proceeding.
So while great efforts were made,1972-75, and the LSSP’s Hector Abhayavardhana directed Engineer DLO Mendis in 1974 to set up the National Engineering Research and Development Centre (NERD), none of these machine-building efforts appear to have achieved fruition, especially with the expulsion of the Left from Sirimavo’s cabinet in 1975, and the hyper-vandalism of JR Jayawardena after 1977…
ee’s contention is that the UF government’s experience of merchant sabotage and the shortcomings of the nonetheless great effort, made people realize a holistic political-economic and military strategy was required. “Those who opposed socialism in one country, settled for socialism in one ministry”, is a famous quip about the LSSP. In the same way, manufacturing a few machine tools does not enable the required economic transformation, as effected by the great machine builders of the 20thC, the USSR and the People’s Republic of China under their Communist parties.
• Car importers are complaining about imminent shortage of imported spare parts, and yet, from the trillions in profits, how much have they invested in local production? The Planters’ Association is complaining about a lack of workers, but how much of their trillions did they invest in technology? Hemas (Morison) also opened a large pharma ‘manufacturing’ outlet. Yet no information was provided on the costs of imports of machinery and chemicals. Also, what does this mean?: “The plant currently manufactures validation batches and expects to commence commercial production in 2021.” Those at the opening with the PM included the same suspects who monopolize drugs and prevent health! No media will ask these questions.
• Foretellings of postcolonialism were premature – some off-white academics are now telling us, after decades of generous funding to postcolonial, postmodern studies etc. Colonialism and their wars escalate, rather than recede. Modernity, which is the making of machines that make machines, still remains strictly verboten for us, in reality and in print.
Those who have launched careers via ‘ethnic’ (read: ‘heathen’) studies – whether it be language, religion, caste, or culture, and attendant wars – continue to regenerate their middle-class income lifestyle, further fanning fog. Those pandithayas, comforted by apropos epidermis or ivory-towered tenure, those who renamed imperialism, ‘hegemony’ (though some wished to promote détente), those who were never Marxists but then declared themselves post-Marxists, are now rereading their Kapital, and dusting off their Lenin archive.
B. Special Focus_
B1. Profits of ‘Natives’ in Coffee Plantations vs Arrack Renting – Pathirana & Aluthge
ee excerpts D Pathirana and C Aluthge’s A History of Underdevelopment & the Political Economy of Inflation in Sri Lanka: Chapter 3 , where the authors point out that local rentier capitalists (who they call ‘natives’) made their money not just from arrack but more from coffee. ee adds, the vast local shipbuilding industry, which the English destroyed, was also a source of capital, though no mention is made of this:
“Some claim, coffee plantations did not assist the Sri Lankan elite to prosper directly given that an insignificant number of ‘natives’ invested in coffee estates. On the contrary, the realization that ‘coffee grew well in the hills …and that it was far more profitable than cinnamon’ drew in the wealthiest speculators, to accumulate land through dispossession of mainly chena lands held by the peasantry.
From 1849-69, nearly 20% of total revenue from aggregate coffee exports of Sri Lanka came from native coffee growers. Further, during the period when English acquired the possession of Lanka, the Moors were the principle traders of coffee grown by the peasantry, who brought it to Galle and Colombo and bartered it for cutlery, cotton, trinkets, clearly indicating locals did prosper directly through coffee trade.
Tennent further states, when coffee mania was in its height in 1845 even ‘the Clergy and one half of the Civil Servants penetrated the hills, and became purchasers of crown lands’, in a speculation which according to him could be paralleled only by the gold rush in California and Australia. Underscoring native involvement, Eric Meyer states, ‘land speculation was widespread and the employees of the government, such as interpreters and headmen, were deeply involved in it. …1846-55, in Kelani Valley, some 1,000 acres had already been sold in this way’.
Further, as Meyer notes, there had been many occasions where ninda land belonging to fallen radala families who took part in the rebellions and those belonging to low-caste villagers were ‘taken over by Revenue officers on the basis of written reports by the headmen, without inquiries on the spot, and sold to planters’. The 1856 Ceylon Almanac carries information on ‘natives’ who held prominent positions in the English administration and received attractive salaries in return. Given that Crown land was sold for as low as 5 shillings per acre they were ideally placed to prosper from the land sales. In this light some of the native coffee estate owners included Jeronis de Soysa, Don Carolis Appuhamy, Merasmy, Cawasjie Eduljie, Don S Kuruppu Korale, WJ Soysa, Sinne Lebbe, DA de Silva, D Bernard Vidahna Arattchy, AM Chetty and Mrs Perera, in Central and Western Provinces alone, and between them they owned 16 coffee estates.
In addition to the accumulation of wealth through coffee growing, they benefited from many other related activities. The need to transport coffee from the hill country to the ports and bring in implements for the estates, consumer goods and so on for the planters and for the new indentured work force, induced demand for trade and transportation which was chiefly satisfied by tavalam (bullock carts). ‘The persons engaged in this wandering trade are chiefly Moors, and the business carried on by them consists in bringing up salt from the government depots on the coast to be bartered in the hills for “native coffee”,’
Profits accumulated by individual retailers through the arrack trade were comparatively low, though the aggregate rents payable accounted for nearly 15% of government revenue during the greater period of 19thC. From the 1850s onwards cartelization of arrack trade limited the rents payable to the English administration by restricting the number of bidders to a small group of Karavamainly from the coastal area of Moratuwa and in turn increased the individual profits accrued to the renters.
The derelict state of the arrack trade in general until the 1860s is portrayed by the following remark by Tennent: ‘the restrictions on distillation, if properly administered, are susceptible of being used as an effectual check on the ruinous abuse of arrack’. Excessive competition among petty traders, hand in hand with the widespread prevalence of illegal distilling of liquor, set limits to private accumulation of profits through the arrack trade until the 1850s, when collusion among the renters uprooted the former barriers to individual wealth accumulation and ultimately restricted the trade to ‘only 18 renters in the whole island by the end of the century’. The ruin of petty arrack retailers due to cut ,-throat competition made it impossible for the majority of them to settle monthly rents. A large number of tavern keepers were jailed for defaulting monthly rents, though impelled by circumstances beyond their control.
This contradicts the thesis that the commercial bourgeoisie of Ceylon emerged after the 1830s,‘while being originally ‘nobodies’ who rose to prominence mainly through monopolizing arrack trade and reinvestment of its surpluses in rubber, coconut, graphite mining, etc’… It would be relevant in this backdrop to note that in 1861-2, the total rents earned for the entire island through arrack trade was only £121,000, while in 1861 the receipts from aggregate coffee exports was as enormous as £1.6 million and £2.6mn in 1869, as against total government revenue during the period as only £767,100 and £946,000, respectively. Even if the arrack traders earned as much as 4 times that of the rent paid to the colonial administration, which is highly unlikely, profits earned through arrack trade could not have come close to net receipts from coffee exports.
Patrick Peebles in this connection states, ‘No direct evidence exists for calculating the profits from the arrack industry’ and provides an estimate of ~£140,000 per annum in profits between 1860-1900, which is miniscule compared to possibly over £2million in net profits earned by coffee exports in 1880. He also points out that the English administration were not of the view that arrack renters earned significant profits during the period.
Furthermore, as noted earlier, one fifth of all coffee exports 1849-69 came from Ceylonese plantations, and locals who bought chena and forest land from the Crown were mostly from non-Govigama caste who became merchants, planters, government contractors and transport agents, indicating local bourgeoisie did accumulate wealth through coffee plantations which was significantly larger compared to net receipts from arrack trade, whose main customers were poorly paid workers in the plantations and Western Province. The Crown selling confiscated chena and forest land at extraordinary low prices for coffee growing enabled locals to also cash in on the land sales.
By 1860 Ceylon was one of the major coffee producers in the world, along with Indonesia and Brazil. It further underscores the significance of its exports earnings for the local elite compared to the arrack trade before the 1850s, largely limited to Western and Central Provinces, and ultimately assisted merely 18 large-scale renters in the entire island by the end of the 19thC. Further, as Gerald Peiris points out, a section of the local bureaucracy who were architects of 1840 Crown Lands Ordinance, which enabled the confiscation of chena and forest land from the peasantry by the colonial administration, were themselves involved in the coffee enterprise.
In this light Michael Roberts maintains, ‘so many Ceylonese planters had been able to purchase “expropriated” land from the Crown’. More conclusively, Peebles asserts that one third of the alienated crown land 1860-89 amassing over 80,000 acres were bought by the local elite. So the significant share of coffee exports receipts accrued to the local elite. This further substantiates the initial accumulation of wealth by native elite through coffee estates prior to the cartelization of arrack in the 1850s.
Kumari Jayawardena further states that the commercial bourgeoisie which emerged in the 19thC had no record of former wealth accumulation and were purely the beneficiaries of the arrack trade, and were ‘Nobodies’: ‘Mudaliars were not aristocrats …that had derived power and patronage from the earlier Kings of Sri Lanka. They first rose to real prominence during colonial rule, with a record of loyal service to Portuguese, Dutch and later English rulers. …they were originally “Nobodies”.’ However, both Emerson Tennent and Marshall Singer note that the 19thC commercial elite in Sri Lanka had their lineage in the ancient caste system, and it was the aristocratic or elite stratum of each caste, be it Govigama or Karava, who received privileged treatment by Portuguese, Dutch and English colonial masters and were endowed with the title ‘Mudaliar’.
‘[T]o this day , the most distinguished families among the Singhalese chiefs bear, in addition to their own names, those of the Portuguese officers, which were conferred to their ancestors at their baptism by the Roman Catholic clergy 3 centuries ago. Ernest de Saram Wijeyesekere Karoonaratne, Maha Modliar of the Governor’s Gate; Johan Louis Perera Abeysekere Goonewardene; Don Andries de Alwis Ameresiriwardene Goonetilleke; Don David de Silva Welaratne Jayetilleke; Don William Adrian Dias Bandaranayeke; Gregory de Soyza Wijeyegooneratne Siriwardene, &c &c. The first are the baptismal or Portuguese, the second the patronymic Singhalese names of the respective chiefs.’
The favoured Singhalese nobles by the colonial masters had to possess broadly 3 requirements to be eligible for the post ‘Mudaliar’: ‘1. The family had to have roots somewhere in the traditional Singhalese nobility 2. The family had to have converted to Catholicism [or Protestantism] early upon the arrival of the Portuguese [the Dutch, or the English]. 3. The family, and preferably the individual, had to have demonstrated loyalty to the Portuguese [the Dutch, or the English] – either through intermarriage or individual acts of loyalty. Repeatedly throughout the historical account of the [colonial] period we find references to families and individuals who met these preconditions and were rewarded accordingly’. This was absolutely necessary because, in order to ‘ensure the loyalty of the inhabitants it was necessary to ensure the loyalty of the chiefs’, given the Sinhala were a race only obedient to their own immediate rulers, a characteristic inherited by the survival requirements of an ancient hydraulic society.
In this backdrop, the 19th commercial bourgeoisie who emerged to prominence cannot be called ‘nobodies’ with no previous background in status and wealth, as held by Jayawardena. It should be self-evident that those who successfully bid for arrack rents required a significant degree of initially accumulated wealth. The banks at the time were also reluctant to lend to the locals, meaning the successful arrack traders must have accumulated wealth previously to be able to reinvest in arrack monopolies from the 1850s.
The above discussion underscores that rise of the commercial bourgeoisie of Sri Lanka during the 19th century was nurtured by the ruin of the peasantry, as opposed to the benign history portrayed by Jayawardena based on arrack renting which delinked the 2 interrelated processes of dissolution and enrichment. It does not neglect the role of arrack renting as a significant means of wealth accumulation. However, the neglect of the encroachment of plantations and the primitive accumulation of the native commercial elite through it and the consequent decimation of the peasantry that was anchored on this enrichment seems to misrepresent the processes active during the rise of the contemporary elite of Sri Lanka.
B2. On China’s Industrialization Path: the Winners – Wei Pan
“Their annual output value has been increasing for more than 20% a year for the last several years. This increase in village and township enterprises, particularly industrial enterprises, has provided jobs for 50% of the surplus labor in the countryside. Instead of flocking into the cities, the peasants have been building villages and townships of a new type… How can a vast country like China be united and organized? Through ideals and discipline. Strength comes from organization. Without ideals and discipline our country would be only a heap of loose sand, as it was in the old days. How, then, could we make a success of revolution and construction?” – Deng Xiaoping
As the force of marketization bears down more menacingly, remaining as small-scale farmers is a way out but the way is increasingly narrowing. Before the mid-1990s, laboring hard in cities was another way out but this was also a narrow as well as meandering path. Prior to June 2003, all major cities in China applied the 1982 State Council Regulations on the “Taking in and Returning of Itinerants and Beggars in Cities,” and systematically adopted policies to drive away, discriminate against and even humiliate migrant workers from rural areas. For Chinese peasants, that 25-year experience of hard labor in cities was a history written with bitterness, humiliation, blood and tears. Although their conditions also awakened the conscience of urban people, a quarter of century passed, and the limitations of such ways of living became an irreversible part of history. Hence, during the recent period, semi-employed peasants had to force their own way out.
The way in which Chinese peasants forced themselves out with distinctiveness and dignity was to build factories near their villages and to collectively thrust their way into the industrial market. Since the war for Liberation, this way has once proclaimed globally: the organized Chinese peasantry is a most powerful force, capable of overturning all fortifications.
Industrialization is the small-scale farmers’ shelter from market victimization. Along their way to marketization, Chinese peasants in some areas were rapidly industrializing and becoming market winners through assistance from collectives. This chapter explains how grassroots authorities acted as intermediaries between the peasants and the market and helped township village enterprises (TVEs) survive the perils of a rudimentary industrial market. Their intervention contributed to the market’s steady evolution to maturity, and promoted market competition rather than furthering its distortions.
The success of rural industries is now taken for granted and often explained by simple factors, such as the large vacuum in consumer goods left by the planned economy, the clumsiness of state enterprises, TVEs’ low-cost labor, and the flexibility of “small boats” capable of easy turns. Some scholars even affirmed that TVEs were the product of an immature market, which as it matured, these small collective enterprises would sooner or later be tied down by corrupt cadres and collective interests as the state enterprises had been, because of their low efficiency, heavy burden, and pollution. Thus it was claimed, TVEs ought to be privatized soon and replaced by more efficient private enterprises.
By the end of the 20th century, state enterprises were already like “rats crossing the street,” and TVEs strangled, while only private enterprises were deemed “rational” enterprises. Nevertheless, do private enterprises also not encounter bankruptcy, pollution, tax evasion, dissipation, and cronyism? Do owners of private enterprises not also migrate abroad and spend their money in developed countries?
The reality is far more complicated than conventional economic logic. TVEs were not only an economic and a social phenomenon, but more a political phenomenon. They were discriminated against both by the Left supporting the state sector and the Right backing up the private sector, and were accused of being redundant, wasteful “covert” state-owned enterprises with vaguely defined property rights. Yet, obeying neither books nor powers, the TVEs embarked on a path of rural industrialization with Chinese characteristics, and provided jobs and training for hundreds of millions of rural laborers.
Until the mid-1990s, about half of the state-owned industries were very lucrative, and even now remain formidable players in China’s marketplace. Meanwhile, the losers among state-owned enterprises (SOEs) enjoyed privileges and regulations to protect them from sudden collapse as well as unfair rules, which limited the space for TVE growth. In addition, although TVEs frequently competed with state industries, the cruelest competition occurred among TVEs themselves; most of them not only imitated one another but also competed for support from SOEs.
TVEs did not always succeed, stories of their failure being at least as numerous as those of success. A TVE bureau officer in a Sichuan county summarized the local TVE experience as “build more, fail more’; while a provincial-level official in Henan used a different tone, “fail more, build more.” It is really difficult to tell how cruel market competition was and how difficult the conditions for TVEs.
So how could Chinese farmers afford such heavy and frequent losses, how did they deal with the pre-existing rules of a socialist economy which cornered them into preset disadvantages, and from whence came the TVE’s competitive edge? As intermediaries between the peasantry and the market, rural grassroots authorities played 2 major roles: one to help peasants contend for industrial resources and succeed in market competition; the other to enhance the cohesion of the community and enterprises by consolidating rural collectives. When a fist is clenched tightly, it hits out more forcefully.
The role of rural grassroots authorities as market intermediaries with regard to peasant competition over industrial resources, is discussed specifically in terms of 4 aspects: breaking pre-existing regulations of the command economy, procuring capital, acquiring technology, and commercializing bureaucratic resources. Focus then shifts to a case study of 4 villages, selected from across China to explain the role of grassroots authorities in organizing peasants and strengthening community bonds. The selected villages are all prominent market winners, and despite drastically different conditions, their authority patterns share some essential features inherited from the People’s Commune system.
The collective form of competition was chosen neither by the state, nor by the peasantry, for whom the family farming system was the initial preference. It was determined by the new circumstances. The peasants were forced by the imperatives of market competition to shift direction. Their building of enterprises through collectives was the continuation of rural socialist practice since the founding of the PRC, and grew more out of the necessity to compete in the market.
I. Competition over Industrial Resources – By the mid-1990s, as Russia reeled from political and economic catastrophe, China surged from poverty to the economic forefront. Real income quadrupled in 15 years after the reforms, and improvements in living standards were widely shared among the people. John McMillan found the Chinese case “unique” and “nonconformist” compared to reforms in Russia and Eastern Europe, for China’s achievement was solely based on competition, which occurred without first carrying out privatization, developing commercial law for financial markets, or even introducing free prices.
McMillan’s observation is correct. But he did not realize that competition could occur without privatization, when unified ownership was split up into many independent economic entities. Competition is not just the property of privatization. When state ownership became a variety of part state and part collective ownership, market competition could take place. And commercial law and an orderly financial market took root when they became necessary for market competition.
Competition engenders losers. However, Chinese farmers quickly won a solid place in the industrial market without being turned into a huge mass of losers, as they competed through rural grassroots authorities’ mediation and through a myriad small and independent collectives. Even in localities where household farming was implemented early and thoroughly, rural cadres still had the chance, albeit a more difficult one, to use the collectives’ ultimate ownership of farmland for purposes of industrialization.
Rural collectives possessed sharp teeth for competition. They bit deeply into previously regulated key resources, rendering those regulations ineffective. Many of the ways in which rural collectives competed did not ‘conform’ to the standards of already mature market economies, which had never existed in China, not to mention distortions. Those methods ‘worked’ because they were suitable to the predetermined conditions of a rudimentary market, nurturing capable competitors instead of creating a huge number of losers. As a result, the planned monopoly of urban industries was eliminated by the powerful competition of rural collectives. Meanwhile, the scale and degree of competition has been rapidly escalating, nurturing a new environment of fair play.
(from: Behind China’s Economic Miracle – the Coalition of Rural Collective Industries & Grassroots Authorities, Wei Pan, Beijing, FLP, 2015)
C. News Index______________________________________________
• ee News Index provides headlines and links to gain a sense of the weekly focus of published English ‘business news’ mainly to expose the backwardness of a multinationally controlled ‘local media’:
(ee is pro-politics, pro-politician, pro-nation-state, anti-corporatist, anti-expert, anti-NGO)
ee Sovereignty news emphasizes sovereignty as economic sovereignty – a strong nation is built on modern industrialization fueled by a producer culture.
• Advocata Promoting Coups?
‘An eminent panel consisting of Prof. Ricardo Hausmann (Director Growth Lab, Harvard University’s Center for International Development), Prof. Mick Moore (Political Economist | Founding CEO & Senior Fellow, International Centre for Tax and Development| Professorial Fellow, Institute of Development Studies’
• Geopolitics of Sri Lankan Tamil Problem
‘The induction of Quad into the Indian Ocean region is an urgent necessity for the US Indo-Pacific strategy. A US military presence in Sri Lanka would enable the US to advance a so-called “island chain strategy” to control sea lanes of the Indian Ocean – of vital importance to China’s foreign trade.’
• Indian Ocean should be a free zone open to every country – President
• One law for all Bim Saviya E-Register: More problems than solutions – Sri Lanka Study Circle
‘Why introduce a law alien to the country and amend the law to return to the existing law?’
• If Sri Lanka signs MCC, a Private Company will take over job of Parliament & Politicians
• Did you know MCC $480m covers only 7 districts, 28% of land area & 10 land registries
• MCC set to privatize Sri Lanka land and establish US military base – US Professor
• MCC non-decision depriving the Colombo of good grant money – Philips
‘… to address traffic congestion at nearly 130 of the City’s junctions’
• Dinesh questions SL Core Group’s reluctance to peruse Lord Naseby’s disclosure
• England prompts Sri Lanka bashing in Geneva
‘US-funded National Peace Council’s Dr. Jehan Perera: ”greater anxiety of being under surveillance”.
• Sri Lanka stings UN with new appointments in New York and Geneva
• Intelligence agencies not monitoring specific group of people, Sri Lanka tells UN
• Polls monitors, journalists’ outfit among recipients of Canadian funding
• We are not here to deliver lecture: German, Swiss Envoys tell President
• India to lose more than it gains from the Quad
• Sri Lanka, Japan hold 4th Dialogue on Maritime Security, Safety and Oceanic Issues
• Why is Modi pushing Rajapaksa on the Tamils?
‘Mahinda Rajapaksa is a democratically elected leader who received a massive mandate of 71% of votes, and he owes nothing to Delhi or Washington for staging his political comeback, observes Ambassador M K Bhadrakumar.’
• How did 13th amendment become part of Indo-Lanka Accord & India’s role in it
• Does India have a ‘Sri Lanka First Security Policy’?
• Only Way Forward for a Developed and Peaceful Sri Lanka: Put 13A to a Referendum
• Provincial Councils More problems than solutions
• Implementing 13th Amendment essential to Modi
‘Douglas Devananda stressed that the provincial council system through the Indo-Lanka accord must continue to be implemented in the country’.
– https://www.newsfirst.lk/2020/09/28/sri-lanka-must-implement-13a-to-achieve-reconciliation-modi/ – http://www.dailymirror.lk/breaking_news/Implementation-of-13th-Amendment-is-essential-Modi-to-MR/108-196720
• Sri Lanka miffed at India’s call to implement 13A
• Lanka avoids any 13A commitment at Rajapaksa-Modi summit
• SL, India to boost trade, investment amidst COVID-19 challenges
The Indian delegation included External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar, National Security Advisor Shri Ajit Doval, Foreign Secretary Shri Harsh Vardhan Shringla and other officials of the Prime Minister’s Office and the Ministry of External Affairs, including the Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Gopal Baglay. The Sri Lankan delegation consisted of Minister of Foreign Affairs Dinesh Gunawardena, Minister of Fisheries Douglas Devananda, Justice Minister Ali Sabry, Mass Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella, Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardena, State Minister of Money, Capital Markets and State Enterprise Reforms Ajith Nivard Cabraal, MP Jeevan Thondaman and several senior officials.
• Indian grant not linked to implementation of the 13th Amendment – Keheliya
• SL seeks fresh currency swap facility, deferment of debt payments from India
‘Lanka owes about $ 960 million to India’
• Modi Can Better Defend India by Shedding Tamil Interests
‘India is basically an island with no land trade routes…because India has offended all its neighbors!’
• Hands off states’ internal affairs, President tells the United Nations
• With its neutral foreign policy Sri Lanka is open for foreign investments: President
• President defends China investment in H’tota port
• Restoration of Authority of the President
• Tamils could not reconcile to Sinhalas becoming a majority with franchise
• RIP Rasaiah Parthipan alias Thileepan (of the LTTE)
• Hartal observed in North condemning Govt decision to ban Thileepan commeomoractive events
• Desperately attention seeking Pro-LTTE TNA & Co. attempting to disturb peace with hartals
• Multiculturalism breeds conflict, sometimes leading to terrorism
• What if Terrorist Leaders set up ‘Virtual Governments’ like Rudrakumaran/TGTE?
• Erection of a Nelson Mandela Statue in Colombo
• China’s role during separatist conflict providing military hardware denied by other countries
• We have nothing to learn from South Africa
• Anagarika Dharmapala Armed
• Sri Lanka reiterates its position over Palestine
• India: All 32 accused in Babri Mosque demolition case acquitted
• Amnesty International to cease work in India, citing government harassment
• India, China working on Ladakh peace formula: Alternate week patrolling after disengagement
• Venezuela: Anti-Blockade Law will tackle US criminal aggression (+ Full speech)
• The Secret History Of How English Intelligence Created Amnesty International
C2. Security (the state beyond ‘a pair of handcuffs’, monopolies of legitimate violence)
ee Security section focuses on the state (a pair of handcuffs, which sposedly has the monopoly of legitimate violence), and how the ‘national security’ doctrine is undermined by private interests, with no interest in divulging or fighting the real enemy, whose chief aim is to prevent an industrial renaissance as the basis of a truly independent nation.
•Easter Sunday bomber met intel agent moments before he blew himself up?
• Hidden force behind April 21 attacks can’t be divulged in public – SLMC secretary
• India plan to offer $50 million credit for Sri Lanka’s defence
‘Almost 50% of all foreign military training slots in India are allocated to Lankan defence personnel. … there are regular high-level exchanges and visits, joint exercises, ship visits and sports interactions.’
• Playing politics with national security
• Customs officers at all levels involved in big time rackets, police probe reveals
• Ranil’s testimony on Anti-Corruption Committee is untrue – Anura Kumara
• A political appointee as security chief
‘Over 200 security personnel on duty in parliament’
• SDIG warns desperados against threatening moves as cops are ordered to shoot
‘Police had identified 27 underworld hit men. “Most of them had been with the military and posed quite a threat to society.’
• Provisions in 20A inimical to rule of law, separation of powers & sovereignty of people – BASL
• Chinese companies pose cyber security threat to SL – Information Technology Society
‘ITSSL Chairman Rajeev Yasiru Kuruwitage Mathew said “not only Chinese mobile applications but also the mobile broadband services built in SL with assistance of Chinese companies could be a threat.”
• Last week Maldives signed Defence Treaty with the US
‘…as India, the US, Japan and Australia gang up against China in the seas close to Sri Lanka’
• Victim and witness protection overkill
‘Act No. 4 of 2015 is a highly suspect piece of legislation from beginning to end. Why do we need foreign aid to maintain a body meant to look after the interest of victims and witnesses?’
• Policing evolving to involve more in neighbourhoods
• Top cops say they are being kicked around like footballs
• Cabinet Okays reforms to speed up justice system as backlog hits 766,000 cases
• Joint committee to restructure the Excise Department
‘Tp stop the transfer of excise officers due to political pressure and to transfer only qualified officers’
• Part of Jaffna’s heritage in stone disappearing
• Lankan origin man De Zoysa kills London police officer: Reports
C3. Economists (Study the Economists before you study the Economics)
ee Economists shows how paid capitalist/academic ‘professionals’ confuse (misdefinitions, etc) and divert (with false indices, etc) from the steps needed to achieve an industrial country.
• Eminent economists urge decisive action to prevent emerging debt crisis: US Advocata
‘”Sri Lanka has one of the worst interest burdens to tax revenue measures in the world, according to Professor Hausmann” – Coup Promoter Hausman
• Port City cuts across “time zones” – Reductio Ad Abeyratnum
• Long term solution is to expand exports to resolve balance of payments – Sanderatne
• Should Credit Information Bureau be killed? Not until open banking – Wijewardena
• CRIB has no say in granting loans?
95% of people and institutions have borrowed and service their debts well and only five per cent have found it difficult to service their debts.
• Viyathmaga to facilitate development with State ministers
‘Its membership is over 10,000 and has over 3,000 activists and the organisation is steered by a 32-member Executive Committee, which is headed by President Rajapaksa.’
• Ceylon Chamber of Commerce 20th Sri Lanka Economic Summit on 1-2 December 2020
• Advocata Economists Incl. Coup Plotter urge decisive action to prevent emerging debt crisis
C4. Economy (Usually reported in monetary terms)
ee Economy section shows how the economy is usually measured by false indices like GDP, etc, and in monetary terms, confusing money and capital, while calling for privatization and deregulation, etc.
• Rating agencies pushing Sri Lanka under the IMF bus
‘Moody’s shareholders are also linked to Indian state banks and Fitch owner Hearst is linked to Sri Lanka’s Capital Media, owner of business-news outlet EconomyNext.’
• Govt. should reveal correct picture with figures: Harsha
“The Department of Census and Statistics will have to release the economic growth rate figures for the 2nd quarter within 75 days for the third quarter. This deadline has now elapsed.”
• Sept. inflation declines marginally to 4%
• Sri Lanka expects US$500mn inflow to rupee bonds, US$700mn China loan in 2020
• Sri Lanka settles US $1bn sovereign bond
• Sri Lanka will have access to GSP+ for 3 more years – EU Ambassador Denis Chaibi
‘With 27 Member States and 450 million customers with high income, we are also the largest market in the world….Through GSP+, EU has unilaterally granted duty free access to about 7,000 Sri Lankan products’
• Moody’s rating action raises many eyebrows
‘“With an ISB settlement due on Sunday 4th of October, 2020, and the 2021 budget due in November, which will shed light on Sri Lanka’s economic risk and recovery, the timing of the Moody’s downgrade is questionable.”’
• Govt. says Moody’s failed to recognise SL’s recovery story
• SJB calls on Govt. to seek IMF deal due to downgrade
• Moody’s Downgrade Politically Motivated
• Sri Lanka says Moodys sovereign rating downgrade to ‘Caa1’ unwarranted
• Moody’s downgrades Sri Lanka over COVID impact
‘“Heightened liquidity and external risks stem from Sri Lanka’s limited secured funding sources to meet its material external debt service payments over the coming years, during which period market refinancing will remain vulnerable to shifts in investor sentiment…At the same time, fiscal and external pressures will continue to limit the scope for reforms to address long-standing credit vulnerabilities, denoting weakening institutions and governance, an important driver of today’s rating action,”
• Sri Lanka’s bonds hammered by default worries
‘Only basket cases such as Venezuela and Lebanon, or countries like Zambia, Belize and Argentina, which are either going into or coming out of debt restructurings, have larger spreads.’
• Moody’s downgrades Bank of Ceylon, HNB, Sampath after Sri Lanka sovereign rating cut
• Foreign investors urged not to be dissuaded by Moody’s erroneous stance on Sri Lanka
• Gotabaya brings National Priority Program under Presidential Secretariat
• Port City, BOI and TRCSL among bodies (see list) brought under the President
• CB’s monetary policy announcement on Oct 16
‘Monetary Policy Review sets the benchmark for Sri Lankan interest rates whether it would increase or decrease.’
• Budget on 17 Nov.
• Ten bankrupt state entities face liquidation
‘Department of Telecommunications, Wildlife Trust, the Sri Lanka Media Training Institute, and the Internal Trade Department, Mihin Lanka, Lanka Fabric Ltd, CWG Hambantota, Rajarata Food Grain Ltd, State Resources Management company and Janatha Fertiliser Co. also, state-owned National Equipment and Machinery Organisation and Sri Lanka Rubber Manufacturing and Export Ltd have been closed down.’
• Sri Lanka’s direct tax revenue to record a significant hike in 2021
• SME sector contributes Rs 8.8 trillion in economic output (52% GDP)
• Sajith calls for National effort to save the country’s economy
• India discussing options to use Indian rupee for South Asia trade
‘Acceptance of rupee in the region as common currency for trade will likely boost bilateral trade volume and cut reliance on US Dollar to finance chronic trade deficits… However, internationalising the rupee demands full capital account convertibility, which India has yet to adopt.’
• Media Mum As Massive Criminal Financial Enterprise at JPMorgan Chase Exposed
‘JPMorgan Chase’s pay out due to alleged market manipulation’
• JPMorgan to pay $920 million for manipulating precious metals, treasury market
C5. Workers (Inadequate Stats, Wasteful Transport, Unmodern Plantations, Services)
ee Workers attempts to correct the massive gaps and disinformation about workers, urban and rural and their representatives (trade unions, etc), and to highlight the need for organized worker power
• Village pleads for assistance to help children attend school
‘with many young girls dropping out of school by about age 15, underage marriage was common in the village’
• Future generation needs to be equipped with technical skills : President
• President stresses value of libraries and sports facilities for wellbeing of children
• Sri Lanka’s Ceylon tea workers live under a legacy of exploitation
‘”Most men who used to work on the plantation now do other things,” she said with a shrug. “Many of them have orchards and they earn more.”… Sri Lanka currently produces around 300 million kilograms of tea annually. It is the fourth-largest tea producer in the world, behind China, India and Kenya. But tea workers remain mired in poverty.’
• Regional Plantation Companies face acute shortage of workers
• Dinesh says Lankan women on par with their counterparts in West
‘Women represent 34.5% of labour force while 39% of expatriate work force consists of women’
• Family background report required for women to work abroad to be reviewed
• Women make up 70% of MAS Holdings’ 99,000 global workforce
• Cost of extending maternity benefits to private sector only Rs. 4.2 b: Verité
‘Government will spend Rs. 58.7 billion providing employment for 60,000 unemployed graduates, an amount that only includes salary commitments, and not training expenses.’
• Bring down price of medicines by using the Senaka Bibile Policy
• Civil Movements and Trade Unions Collective pledges to defeat 20A
• SL pensions abroad unceremoniously stopped by Yahapalanaya
• LRH staff clarifies misrepresentation by senior professor
• Saumya Liyanage removed from posts of Dean and Professor
• No limit to international students who can study in England
‘To increase the total number of international students choosing to study in higher education system each year to 600,000 by 2030’
• Minister Bandula urges US for student scholarships
• National Skills Passport spurs long term skills planning: Employers
• Empathy in the learning process in Sri Lanka expanded with the help of Japanese government
• Back to pre-revolutionary Cuba with Che Guevara
“Marxism and the Negro Problem” – WEB Dubois
‘It is white labor that deprives the Negro of his right to vote, denies him education, denies him affiliation with trade unions, expels him from decent houses and neighborhoods, and heaps upon him the public insults of open color discrimination.’
C6. Agriculture (Robbery of rural home market; Machines, if used, mainly imported)
ee Agriculture emphasizes the failure to industrialize on an agriculture that keeps the cultivator impoverished under moneylender and merchant, and the need to protect the rural home market. Also, importation of agricultural machinery, lack of rural monetization and commercialization, etc.
• ComBank & Hayleys Agriculture sell more imported agricultural machinery
‘the promotion applies to the purchases of a range of Kubota, Agrotech and Farmtrac agricultural machinery available with Hayleys Agriculture.’
• 256,000 hectares of virgin forest lands cleared for Mahaveli
‘Large swaths of fertile land went under water and thousands of people were forcibly uprooted from their ancestral lands.’
• President advises officials not to make people’s problems worse
‘The President told the district’s political authority to summon all officers to one place and expeditiously resolve the other land issues as well.’
• Action plan to tackle human-elephant conflict before President within two weeks
‘Wildlife Department had to protect 1.2 million hectares (nearly 66% of the country)… only one third of the arable land which amounted to 30% of the existing land area was being used for agriculture and suggested that vertical living for rural societies be looked into.’
• Two Chinese companies bag contracts in $ 675 m ADB canal project
‘Project includes 28 km canal through Minneriya, Girithale and Hurulu sanctuaries’
• Presidential Directive to Speed Village Renewal: 14-Day Response Time
• Moves to import 100,000MT of rice
‘Some 100,000 metric tonnes of rice are to be imported because private millers are hoarding paddy stocks without milling them into rice and releasing it to the market, the Cabinet has decided…. Last year, Sri Lanka imported 240,000 metric tonnes of onion from India….
• Rubber, pepper imports killing local producers
• Is the Rubber Industry on verge of extinction?
‘Nearly 100,000 rubber smallholders (RSH) need to be provided with technical know-how’
• Agriculture Dept. in a slumber
• Tried & Tested Method to solve high prices of vegetables & reduce dependence on imports
• Saved Treasury Rs. 1.1 tn for 28 years since privatization: claims Planters Association
• Rothschilds relative first person to introduce tea to Ceylon
• 166th AGM of the Planters Association of Ceylon (PA) last week
• Tea Traders’ Association thanks Temporary Suspension of Promotion and Marketing Levy
• Southern Indian Ocean: Securing a common fisheries policy for India and the littoral states
‘In Sri Lanka, over 2.7 million fishermen from 15 coastal regions rely upon fisheries for their livelihood. They add to a yearly assessed fish catch of 530,920 metric tons accounting for 1.3% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Total number of working fishing boats in year 2016 was accounted for over 60,000’
• Indian fishermen demand direct talks with SL
• Cattle slaughter ban boosts CSE chicken stocks
• Govt. to boost dairy production
‘small to medium dairy farmers that contribute to 85% of the current yield’
• Fonterra co-creates grass root solutions with their dairy farmers
‘Smallholder dairy farmers form the backbone of the dairy industry, contributing to 90 per cent of Sri Lanka’s local milk supply’
• Fake news campaign alleging environmental destruction exposed: PMD
• Valuable flora in Chunnakkadu reserve destroyed
• Six arrested for damaging forest in Kantale
• The College of Community Physicians on Attempts to Legalise Cannabis in Sri Lanka
• Herd of wild Sri Lankan elephants have begun eating plastic rubbish dumped near habitat
C7. Industry (False definitions, anti-industrial sermons, rentier/entrepreneur, etc)
ee Industry section notes the ignorance about industrialization, the buying of foreign machinery, the need to make machines that make machines, build a producer culture. False definitions of industry, entrepreneur, etc, abound.
• More than 300 luxury vehicles imported to SL during COVID-19 period
• Positive signals from three oil basins – Gammanpila
‘“If and when the production of oil in Sri Lanka is successful we will be able to generate and provide employment for nearly 1.5 million and bring back many Sri Lankan expatriate workers currently working in the Middle East in the same industry.’
• Sri Lanka should be Asia’s energy hub: Energy Minister Gammanpila
‘Lanka Indian Oil Co. is the only private company involved under the Petroleum Industry…Lanka IOC is set to be the first company to start manufacturing Grease locally by the end of the year, which is in line with Government’s policy for import substitution.’
• 72% of energy, 50% of containers & 35% of bulk cargo transported across the Indian Ocean.
• Why Sri Lanka needs China to maintain as a transshipment hub in Indian Ocean?
• Sri Lanka on track to complete 9mn passenger airport terminal in 2023
‘TAISEI Corporation, Japan, is the main contractor for the project with Japan Airport Consultants Inc. (JAC) and Nippon Koei Co. Ltd. (NK) as consultants’
• Talks underway to retake oil tanks leased out to India
• Multi-billion rupee project in the pipeline to push up SL’s fuel buffer stock to 3 months
‘88% of daily distribution of fuel is done by bowsers belonging to both the CPSTL and private owners.’
• Who prevents Litro from using available equipment?
‘The former CPC Chairman emphasized that prevention of state from competing with the private sector couldn’t be justified under any circumstances.’
• Long-term generation expansion plan – Legal barrier against implementing the Electricity Act
• ADB funded LECO-UOM microgrid project launched with German DIMO and DHYBRID
‘ADB assistance includes SL’s first large scale 100MW wind park in Mannar, 30MW hydropower station in Moragolla and the solar rooftop credit line…… Alahapperuma said the uniqueness of the project was the coming together of institutions of the magnitude of ADB, LECO, UOM, DIMO and DHYBRID to accomplish the task’
• Controversial Singapore firm bags coal deal
• Largest wind power plant in the country to add 100 Megawatt to the national grid (Video)
• Indian CEAT produces 50% total requirements of tyres in Sri Lanka, around 4 million tyres.
‘There is 470mn equipment on ground waiting to be commissioned,” Dadlani said. “We are waiting for the machinery supplier’s engineers to be cleared to come.”
• President wants Sri Lanka Post to deliver an efficient service to become a profit making entity
• President insists local production of high-quality fabrics
‘Manufacturers had complained that several companies had to be closed down due to the coupon system implemented for school uniforms’
• President explores possibility of producing school uniforms locally
‘Creative Textile Mill has been importing threads from India, Pakistan and China to produce clothing material….“We can reduce the import cost by 68% if we can boost the local textile production”, President highlighted. It was also revealed that with the purchase of local garments, Ministry of Education could save up to Rs 80 million annually….Vanguard Industries (Pvt) Ltd, Kapuwatta, Kadana, which supplied 40% of the school uniform requirement…’
• Morison opens largest pharma manufacturing facility in Sri Lanka
‘Morison PLC, the largest oral solid dosage pharmaceutical manufacturer in Sri Lanka and a subsidiary of Hemas Holdings PLC,’
• Hemas Holdings commissions Sri Lanka pharma plant to make five billion pills
‘The plant currently manufactures validation batches and expects to commence commercial production in 2021’
• Industrial Association of Sri Lanka holds 29th AGM, appoints Nestlé’s Egodage as Chairman
Bandula Egodage of Nestlé Lanka PLC was elected Chairman, Sanjev Perera of Ipha Industries Ltd. and Brahaman Balaratnarajah of Haycarb PLC appointed Senior Vice Chairman and Deputy Vice Chairman, Others on the Executive Committee are Associated Motorways Ltd., Ceylon Biscuits Ltd., Ceylon Tobacco Co. PLC, Dipped Products PLC Hettigoda Industries Ltd., Litro Gas Lanka Ltd., Piramal Glass Ceylon PLC, Polypak Secco Ltd., Richard Pieris & Co PLC, Senok Trade Combine Ltd., Singer Industries (Ceylon) PLC, The Lion Brewery Ceylon PLC, The Swadeshi Industrial Works PLC and Unilever Sri Lanka Ltd. The Industrial Association of Sri Lanka (IASL) was formed on 13 March 1991 to enhance industrial production’
• Chaos for import traders
‘Raw material required to manufacture of export products and consumption goods for the domestic market. A classic example was imported chemicals used in the manufacture of yoghurt which were suspended and later relaxed after appeals.’
• Importers say motor vehicle stocks not sufficient for 2-1/2 months
• Army, Police combined raid catches over a hundred illegal sand miners in Trinco
• Govt. contemplates action against 4,000 factories without environmental clearance
‘7,000 factories on the banks of the Kelani River from Kaduwela to Peliyagoda and only 3,000 factories have obtained environmental approvals.’
• A garment factory within school premises!
• Ten buses repaired at a cost of Rs. 17 million vested with the public
• SL’s first ever homegrown electric bicycle ‘Rhoda’ hits local streets
‘Designed and assembled in Sri Lanka…’
• Coordinating unit to bring Technology, Research and Innovation closer to the general public
• Role of Special Economic Zones in development of Sri Lanka – Rockefeller Pathfinder
‘In BOI projects, in December 2013, textile accounted for 60%, knowledge services for 4% and 12% for manufacturing. Disappointingly, the numbers were the same 3 years later, when it came to the apparel sector, which accounted for an unchanged 60%, manufacturing halved to 6.6% and there is no data available for knowledge services.’
• German Technical Cooperation Agreement (They sell we buy)
This agreement amounts to 11 Million Euros with an additional grant of 2 Million Euros allocated as post-COVID-19 support. The German assistance comprises, among others, promotion of vocational training and support for small and medium-sized enterprises.
• Sri Lanka launches countrywide E-waste collection project
• Attawapiskat First Nation versus De Beers Diamond Mine
‘More than 8 million carats of diamonds were taken from the giant open pit mine, generating billions in revenues for the mine’s owners, leaving behind a legacy of pollution and broken promises’
C8. Finance (Making money from money, banks, lack of investment in modernity)
ee Finance tracks the effects of financialization, the curious role of ratings agencies, false indices, etc.
• Ceylon Tobacco regains status as the most valuable stock
• Who would carry the burden of the SWAP? De Silva vs. Cabraal
• Sri Lanka private credit up in August, SOE borrowings reach trillion rupees
• FinCEN files: Lanka lumped with high risk nations
• MIF says no change in its Fitch rating over the years
• Abans to divest stake in Abans Finance to Softlogic Capital
• Indra Traders MD Elevated to Deputy Chairman at Sampath Bank,
‘Rushanka Silva made Deputy Chairman (Non-Independent, Non-Executive Director) and Deshal De Mel as Senior Independent Director, and Keshini Jayawardena as Non-Executive, Independent Director…Silva is also Managing Director of Indra Traders, Deputy Chairman of Siyapatha Finance; Non-Executive Director of Indra Motor Spares, and Indra Property Development, Chairman of Braybrooke Residential Properties, Braybrooke Residential Towers, and Indra Hotels and Resorts Kandy…De Mel is a Non-Executive Director of Capital Alliance Investments (Pvt) Ltd and Research Director of Verité Research (Pvt) Ltd, and was Commissioner at the Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka in 2018-19. Jayawardena was Nations Trust Bank Chief Operations Officer HSBC Sri Lanka Head of Operations, Consultant at Bridge Partnership and The Centre for Inclusive Leadership, and linked to London’s Kinetik Solutions.
• Sri Lanka’s DFCC to sell Rs7bn in bail-in bonds
• Asia Asset Finance Rs. 1 b debenture issue oversubscribed
• Banking sector counters see selling pressure
‘with the conclusion of the post COVID19 period relief granted to banks by the authorities. This would result in the end of the debt moratorium and the entire banking sector would have to revert to the pre COVID 19 period, stock market analysts said.’ Consequently, banks will have to recover certain loans from the tourism sector related entities…’
• Commercial Bank bought Bangladesh operations of French multinational bank Credit Agricole Indosuez
• Banking and finance sector undergo significant changes
‘SL banking and finance sector to undergo significant changes next year following the replacement of the specialised bank licence with commercial licences and introduction of mergers of licensed finance companies…. 6 licensed specialised banks and 26 licenced commercial banks are operating in the country. The licensed specialised banks are National Savings Bank, Sri Lanka Savings Bank, Housing Development Finance Corporation Bank, State Mortgage and Investment Bank, Regional Development Bank and Sanasa Development Bank.’
• Committee to be appointed to study microfinance – Shehan Semasinghe
‘mounting complaints that lenders have offered loans at extremely high-interest rates.’
• Securities and Exchange Commission to push PPPs listings
• Regional Development Bank one of 10 local banks in US-ADB’s SME Line of Credit Project
• Sri Lanka rupee steady, long tenors marginally up ahead of auction
• Sri Lanka rupee bonds quoted wide after Moody’s downgrade
• Sri Lanka rupee ends firmer, gilt yields marginally down (O2)
• LOLC, first Sri Lankan company to be recognised with CIO 100 Award
C9. Business (Rentierism: money via imports, real-estate, tourism, insurance, fear, privatization)
ee Business aka ee Rentier focuses on diversions of the oligarchy, making money from unproductive land sales, tourism, insurance, advertising, etc. – the charade of press releases disguised as ‘news’
• US Chamber of Commerce Sri Lanka launches ‘Tradeshifts’ at 28th AGM
‘The new Board of Directors: Presantha Jayamaha (Elyon Global & Pyxle International) – President, Sanjeeva Abeygoonawardene (Mountain Hawk Express) – Vice President, Shirendra Lawrence (MAS Holdings) – Secretary, Riza Wadood (IBM Sri Lanka) – Treasurer, Dr. Kumudu Gunasekera (Stax Inc) – President Emeritus, Lakshan Madurasinghe (Coca-Cola Sri Lanka Ltd.) – Director, Hatem Rajabdeen (North Manufacturing) – Director, Hasitha Abeywardene (Microsoft Sri Lanka) – Director, Nilupa Kiringoda (Sysco Labs Technologies) – Director, Dr. Sanjeev Jha (Fairfirst Insurance) – Director, Shea Wickramasinghe (CBL Group) – Director, Dr. Rasitha Wickramasinghe (Stax Inc) – Director, Duminda Ariyasinghe (JAT Investments) – Director, Susan Walke – Representative of US Embassy’
• US provides direct employment through Sri Lankan exporters for over 150,000 people
• Sri Lanka’s Kelsey Homes says starting 300 unit gated community
• The urgent need for a Building Code for Sri Lanka
• Ceylon Hospitals, owners of Durdans Hospital net profit Rs. 467 mn on revenue Rs. 5.98 bn
‘The directors are: Messrs. AE Tudawe (executive chairman), Dr. ADPA Wijegoonewardene (senior vice president – medical), UD Tudawe (executive vice-president), AS Tudawe (executive), while Messrs. YNR Piyasena, AS Abeywardene, SM Ismail, ADB Talwatte, and AVR de S. Jayatillake are independent non-executive directors.’
• Access Rs. 1,93 billion revenues
‘Sumal Perera with 25% of the company is its biggest shareholder, J.C. Joshua (10.1%) and RMN Joshua (7%), Shamal Perera (5.08%) and DRS Malalasekera (4.5%) who are Sumal Perera’s children and RJS Gomez (a founder of the company along with Messrs. Sumal Perera and JC Joshua). Directors are Sumal Perera (chairman), JC Joshua (MD), DAR Fernando (COO) SHS Mendis (executive), SD Munasinghe (executive), RJS Gomez (non-executive), Prof. Malik Ranasinghe, ND Gunaratne, SD Perera and DS Weerakkody are non-executive independent directors.’
• Sriyan De Silva Wijeyeratne appointed Hemas Executive Director
‘Sriyan was Managing Director/CEO of Teejay Lanka’
• Hotels face shock treatment from Ceylon Electricity Board
• Sri Lanka to build Colombo Port City as first special economic zone for services
• Chinese and Sri Lankan governments set to discuss Colombo Port City project
• Afghanistan and SL Chambers of Commerce sign historic MOU to expand trade & investment
• Iran engages Trade Minister for barter deal
‘Iran was one of the largest buyers of Ceylon Tea, and it could be bartered with Iranian products such as bitumen, solar panels and agriculture implements.’
• 41st Annual General Meeting of the Sri Lanka-Japan Business Council
• US helps Sri Lanka prepare for return of tourists
‘US-funded technical experts have helped the Sri Lanka Tourism Alliance and Sri Lanka TourismDevelopment Authority (SLTDA) develop their communication and outreach plans.’
• Thilak Weerasinghe elected Sri Lanka Association of Inbound Tour Operators President
‘Weerasinghe is Chairman of Lanka Sportreizen…Nishad Wijetunga, CEO of Wayfarers (Pvt) Ltd. and Gayangi Wirasinha, Managing Director of Abercrombie & Kent were elected as Vice Presidents. Nalin Jayasundera, Managing Director of Aitken Spence Travels Ltd was elected as the Secretary and Bobby Jorden Hansen, Managing Director of Columbus Tours (Pvt) Ltd. was elected as the Treasurer. Executive Committee: Chandra Wickremasinghe, Chairman of Connaissance de Ceylan, Nilmin Nanayakkara, MD of NKAR Travels & Tours (Pvt) Ltd, Joyce Padmini Paul, MD of Golden Isle Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Rohan Abeywickrema MD of Hawk Travels (Pvt) Ltd., Nalin A. Malwenna, MD of House of Travels & Tourism (Pvt) Ltd., Devindre Senaratne, MD of Journey Scapes (Pvt) Ltd., Charith De Alwis, GM of Tangerine Tours (Pvt) Ltd., Nalaka Amaratunga, CEO Destination Management Sector of Walkers Tours Ltd., Surendra Ediriweera, MD of Ceylon Tours (Pvt) Ltd., Bandula Withana, DGM of Jetwing Travels (Pvt) Ltd. and Mahen Kariyawasan, MD of Andrew the Travel Company (Pvt) Ltd as Immediate Past President.
• Laugfs Gas enters into strategic partnership with Abans
• Indian Global e-governance and compliance platform ‘Compfie’ in Sri Lanka
C10. Politics (Anti-parliament discourse, unelected constitution)
ee Politics points to the constant media diversions and the mercantile and financial forces behind the political actors, of policy taken over by private interests minus public oversight.
• Facilitating Introduction of Urgent Bills through the 20th Amendment to the Constitution
‘A future government can utilize these proposed provisions introduced through the 20th Amendment to prevent citizens challenging bills brought against the national interest.’
• 20th Amendment – Storm in a Teacup?
• The 20th Amendment: A violation of procedure?
‘Article 154R of Chapter XVIIA of the Constitution, set up a Finance Commission to fund the Provinces. The Finance Commission includes 3 members appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Constitutional Council to represent the 3 major communities, each being a person who has distinguished himself or held high office, in finance, law, administration, business or learning.’
• Rajitha says 19A wholly civil society product, vows to save it from SLPP
• 18 parties challenge 20A in the Supreme Court.
‘1. Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB)- Ranjith Madduma Bandara, 2. R. Sampanthan (Tamil National Alliance), 3. Dr Pakiyasothy Saravanamuttu, 4. Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA), 5. Nagananda Kodituwakku- Sri Lanka Vinivida Peramuna, 6. SJB Youth Wing Samagi Tharuna Balawegaya (Lihini Fernando & Rasika Jayakody), 7. Transparency International (TISL), 8. Keerthi Tennakoon, 9. S.S.C. Ilankovan- Human Rights activist, 10. Abdul Sanoon- Human Rights activist, 11. Anil Kariyawasam – citizen, 12. Indika Gallage- Attorney-at-Law, 13. Young Lawyers Association. 14. UNP group- Dr. Ajantha Perera, Oshala Herath, Jeran Jegadeesan and Dr. Chandima Wijegunawardana. 15. Ceylon Mercantile, Industrial and General Workers Union General Secretary Sylvester Jayakody, 16. Ceylon Teachers’ Union (CTU), 17. T.D.B. Wijegunawardena – citizen, 18. P.K.R. Perera – citizen.’
• BASL alert: 20A means ‘the only remedy will be to take arms against the State’ – Jayatilleka
• Imprisoning An Island – Jayatilleka
• The 20A: A Very Wrong Approach to Constitution-Making – Uyangoda
‘Constitutional consensus-building in a deeply divided polity like ours is a frustrating and time-consuming political exercise.’
• Populism, despotism and mass psychology – David
‘Mussolini the prototype authoritarian did not take power in a coup’
• How C.P. de Silva voted against the “Totalitarianism” of his own Government – Jeyaraj
• The worst judgment of the Indian Supreme Court
• Monitoring next election will be a challenge with Govt. wanting to reaffirm 2/3 mandate
‘INFORM Executive Director Udaya Kalupathirana, FMM Convenor Seetha Ranjani, CPA Executive Director Pakiyasothi Saravanamuththu, CMEV Senior Researcher Thusitha Siriwardena, CMEV National Coordinator Manjula Gajanayaka’
• Fr. Dushantha Rodrigo appointed Anglican Bishop of Colombo
• Is JVP a Political Party Deviated From Traditional Left Politics and Development Oriented?
• Kraisak Choonhavan (1947–2020)
‘in October 1976, Rightists and the military crushed political dissent, driving thousands to the Communist Party of Thailand’s (CPT) jungle bases’
C11. Media (Mis/Coverage of economics, technology, science and art)
ee Media shows how corporate media monopoly determines what is news, art, culture, etc. The media is part of the public relations (corporate propaganda) industry. The failure to highlight our priorities, the need to read between the lines. To set new perspectives and priorities.
‘Exceeded 125 billion rupees at rack rates in 2019 with TV share almost 99 billion in 2019…top 3 channels Hiru, Derana and Swarnavahini account for 56% of the total spend…600,000 new consumers came in during the pandemic, a 288% growth in digital media…7 million YouTube users with 10 million impressions a day, reaches 31% of the population. There are 6.2 million FB users, 28% of the population, who spend 20 minutes per visit. Almost 44% of FB users are outside Western Province.’
• Call of the sea: From Navy to maritime archaeologist, Somasiri Devendra comes full circle
‘sailed by an all Jaffna crew from Valvettithurai to Boston, US. “It is the longest voyage made by a sailing ship at the time.’
• The Bandaranaikes and the Bevens of Horagolla
• Hoole’s busting myths about Navalar