“Before you study the economics, study the economists!”
e-Con e-News 15-21 August 2021
• Search (google) for ‘How many killed in Afghanistan?’ It only gives numbers of US soldiers killed. This is just a reminder of what this internet is all about. There is also no exact data on how many women were killed by the US, English and other NATO forces there.
This white media propaganda will now switch to how their mainly manly white killers have to remain in Afghanistan to save women. US pretexts using women as an excuse for war goes back to the white settlers in 17th century: Native Americans were accused of kidnapping white women. Such false allegations were then used to justify genocide. Again, the internet does not provide numbers for original Americans murdered.
This ‘white man’s burden’ to protect women is occurring while England and the US are trading accusations: England is exposing tapes of President Joe Biden’s son abusing women and ‘substances’ in hotel rooms, while their Prince Andrew is avoiding arrest in the US for raping a minor.
• Tweet & Run! This ee reproduces the Afghanistan Central Bank governor’s last tweets before he fled Kabul. He exposes the link between the US Treasury Department, the IMF, World Bank, Central Banks & Reuters. The CB governor claims: he was the last to know? (see ee Focus)
• US President Biden unsettled kalusuddhas everywhere dreaming of green cards, by stating Afghans who betrayed their country, working as informers and agents for the US government, are ‘equally as important’ quickly adding ‘almost’, as the US citizens they left behind when their officials and soldiers fled Afghanistan (news.yahoo.com/joe-biden-said-committed-helping-190509343.html).
With Biden misspeaking such revealing gaffes, US Vice-President Harris is dusting off her 50 shades of skin to reclaim Asian allies. The Afghanistan withdrawal is linked to the whites’ need to focus their attack on China, to prevent the rise of another industrial power. She will arrive in Singapore Sunday and visit Vietnam on Tuesday. She will provide fog while the US conducts provocative war games against China.
Meanwhile, who said the English left? They have 145 military bases round the world. So do other Europeans. Post-colonial indeed!
While Obama was setting up 400 US bases surrounding China, local US media agents instead attacked China, claiming it was sitting up a ‘string of pearls’, of military bases across Asia (Random Notes). Meanwhile, a new US military RAND research report suggests the very best way for the US to unsettle Russia and China is to be ‘baffling and unpredictable’ (see ee Sovereignty, Baffling)
• 6.9 million people voted for the current President of Sri Lanka. They wish him to truly take charge, control the merchants and the banks, and ignore those chattering nonsense about ‘militarization’ and ‘despotism’. The rich whites wish to maintain their wasteful lifestyles, and will not invest in a just economy.
ee has kept asserting that a war economy is inevitable, much like what England imposed here to protect themselves during their WW2. While Covid has to be defeated, many calling for total lockdown also hope the economy will crash. So it’s hilarious to hear SJB economic spokesmouths talking about how people are more important than money, and that ‘Sri Lankan Lives Matter!’
These are the same people who promoted policies to destroy the public health system and social safety net.
The most criminal news this week is that millions of J&J vaccine produced in South Africa were exported to Europe rather than given to Africans as promised 6 months ago, while 10,000s of Africans died.
This recalls President GR’s televised suggestion this week that vaccines from China were needlessly delayed by doctors beholden to private pharma interests, eg Hemas, etc. Vaccine apartheid continues on a global scale. Africans themselves did not know that these vaccines were being produced in their country? Industrialization is as much a secret as military intelligence.
• Some media and NGOs funded by NATO are calling the Sri Lankan President a ‘military despot’. ee this week recalls the military origins of the iPhone, internet, etc., and academic research in general. The so-called democracies including their education systems are solidly guided by their military, economic and political needs, and depend on exporting fascism to the world.
Every advanced country has a war production act, to ensure military, food & health security. Except us. The imperialists call it ‘defense’ production. What does this mean? Imperialist countries actively hide their industrial policies, while paying our academics to talk of ‘free speech’, and economists to blather about ‘free trade’, etc. But the link between military, state and education is solid in those countries.
Apple’s iPhone, iPad, etc., designs and engineering technologies, were first developed and funded by the US government and military (see ee Focus).
This ee also focuses on the US Defense Production Act (DPA), which still gives their executive branch enormous powers. The Pentagon uses DPA authority to place 300,000 orders per year for weapons of war and related equipment. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) also uses the DPA to respond to disasters, prioritizing its needs for food and bottled water, etc. The DPA was also used to supply natural gas to California during the 2000-1 energy crisis, when private interests undermined the energy system. So why does the US wish us to privatize energy, then?
The white media then wishes to preserve the myth that these imperialist countries are ‘democracies’.
• Our academics live in a dream world. While opposing the privatization of education, ee also challenges the type of graduates produced. They’re just the wannabe classes mimicking the ruling kalussuddhas, who are imitating the type of white man who ruled the non-settler colonies: these white men could not be seen doing any physical work. They imitate the ruling rentiers, who wish to make money while they sleep, from FIRE (Finance, Insurance, Real Estate).
Meanwhile, China – that our kalusuddhas are taught to hate – invests heavily in industrial education and has the world’s largest vocational educational sector. They learned from the USSR etc. England’s industrial revolution that made that country powerful, were not the fakers from Oxford etc. It was English mechanics’ institutes after 1815 (an important date for us) that led to the phenomenon of machines making machines after 1848 (another date for us)
Science, etc., was looked down as the province of the working class, and the ‘humanities’ were for the ruling class’s dilettantes. This eventually led to England’s comparative decline.
Ask any of our graduates about the history of machines making machines. They will not know, nor care about doing so here?
The import lobby connected to multinationals dominates and will not allow investment in local production. They also control the media. They set the tone. The education system is supposed to reproduce the class structure. The different schools provide the fodder for the different needs of the companies, who dominate the government. It is the difference between a producer culture and a consumer culture. This is not so in our traditional culture, where people each day know/knew the link between rains, crops, happiness and statecraft?
Devo vassatu kaalena – sassa sampatti hetu ca
Pito bhavatu loko ca – raja bhavatu dhammiko
May there be rains on time, may crops be plentiful,
May the people be happy and may rulers be righteous
Here is a daily stanza repeated in homes every day. It blends the hopes of people to enable a just political economy in a beautiful country subject to the caprices of a tropical monsoonal climate (ee Media, Kohomba Kankariya).
And yet we have funny nationalists, funny Leftists, funny Marxists, funny socialists. (Random Notes) Some talk of the nation but refuse to acknowledge the nation is made up mainly of cultivators and workers, who are wiser than most, and who carry the future in their hands. We have ‘Marxists’ who talk of high ideals alone, but nothing about the modern industrial economy that has to undergird such talk.
• Rasthiyadu Padhanama (Idlers’ Foundation?), a local ‘rap’ group, was charged in court this week for promoting violence and drugs. This has of course animated the fake liberals in our midst. These ‘liberals’ while working for English Unilever’s various advertising agencies, promote ‘freedom’, etc. They then get the fake ‘conservatives’ going, who will shout at each other and waste everybody’s time.
This gangsta rap bizness is sponsored by the biggest gangstas on earth, represented here by the US Embassy. (Random Notes)
A1. Reader Comments –
• Fake Divisions • Perahera & Elephant Cruelty • Migrant Workers as Pawns • Central Bank Governor Resists IMF • Finance Controls the Government
A2. Quotes of the Week
• Corporate Media is Mind Control • IMF Robbing Angola • Pettah Bread Mafia • Japan Robs Local Market • Cancer Hospital Scandal • Banks Making Huge Profits • EconomyNext says Deng was Paraplegic • China Following Germany • Clinton goes Marxist on China • US Defense Production Act
A3. Random Notes –
• Drugs, Gangsters & US Embassy RocknRoll • Baurs Fake Organic • Unilever Controls Geneva’s UNHRC • Media’s Fake Statistics • Migrant Workers & Machines • Migrant Workers Database • Taliban & England’s Escape • Biden’s Printed $s Fly off Plane • Aphtha on Afghani Communists • US Funded Jihadi Terrorists • England’s 145 Military Bases • US War Games Continue in Indian Ocean • The Caribbean Sea still a US Lake
B. ee Focus
B1. The iPhone, the State Military & Education
B2. The US Treasury Dept, the IMF, World Bank, Central Banks & Reuters
B3. The USA, Industry & War
C. News Index
A1. Reader Comments
ee thanks Readers who send articles of interest. Please excerpt or summarize what is important about any news sent, or your comments, and place any e-link at the end. Email: email@example.com
• ‘It is not a matter of young vs old or ability or stupidity, civilian vs military, it is just the ruling capitalists will simply not allow it…’
• ‘Elephants tortured = Perahera walk. Are horses not tortured by those who talk of elephant torture? What do horses have to do for Olympic and other medallists, the queen and other racing gamblers, fox hunters, etc? A ‘Free the Captive Horses’ global movement is needed, and dog-show dogs next? Or house cats!’
• ‘I do not understand the link between anti-Sinhala Buddhism and the cruelty to elephants in the Perahera’
• ‘Was ee trying to say imperialist countries use migrant workers to put pressure on their own workers’ power? As well as use them in work that has not been replaced by machines, which when it happens is only operated by their workers. The outcry surrounding the killing of the Sri Lankan worker at an immigration centre in Japan, at one end sends a message to their own people that they are being strict, and also to migrant workers that they better not ask for too much At the same time they pass laws to enable more migrants to come until they figure out how to get Japanese women or test-tubes to have more Japanese babies? Phew!’ (see Random Notes)
• ‘CB Governor’s resistance to IMF is quite surprising to me. Our economists don’t need to know anything anyways because IMF and WB are the outsourced Central Bank researchers and policy developers anyhow!’
• ‘Our bureaucracy does hold sway over the elected political establishment in the finance sector. No minister of finance, PM or president has enough balls to overrule, question or counter advice from the entrenched cartel in the Treasury/CB/Ministry of Finance. Basil may understand more than some. Also Ravi K. But neither will represent the people against this entrenched bureaucracy. There is some hope in WD Lakshman? But he doesn’t influence the rest of the CB apparatus. I am not sure about Cabraal – and wonder where we’d place him.’
A2. Quotes of the Week_
• ‘Corporate media is mind control at mass scale. People who identify as smart, independent thinkers have their minds altered by it every day, and they believe they came to those opinions on their own.’
• ‘As part of the IMF program, Angola has pledged to sell 195 businesses or stakes, including partial holdings in national oil company Sonangol and diamond firm Endiama, to boost its public finances and reduce the role of the state in the economy. The government also aims to remove fuel subsidies and increase public transport tariffs “once the pandemic subsides,” the IMF said.’ – ee Economy, Angola
• ‘The inaction to curb the traders’ mafia in Pettah has taken over the control of the economy. The Government has failed to give any relief to the general public.’ – All Ceylon Bakery Owners Association, ee Agriculture
• ‘Former Army Commander Krishantha de Silva testified that Mr Wickremesinghe did not accept intelligence presentations at the NSC [National Security Council] meetings about the rising Islamic extremism in the country and in particular in the East. PM Wickremesinghe had in fact gone to the extent of stating, “No, no that cannot happen.” – ee Security, Ranil
• ‘In Japan, the Central Bank ordered banks to lend to strategic sectors, in a method known as “window guidance”, a practice repeated in both South Korea and Taiwan. Ironically, just as Sri Lanka’s NDB was privatized in the 1980s, trade liberalization led to the flooding of the local consumer market with Japanese brands – backed to the hilt by Japanese development banks.’ – ee Economists, Banks
• ‘I am also deeply concerned about how many patients a doctor can keep track of. Most consultant doctors work the first half of the day in government institutions where they will encounter more cases and in turn a larger number of rare cases they could attach their names to. Then the second half of the day is spent in 2 or even 3 private hospitals where they see some 20-30 patients at each. Patients pay an average of Rs3000 for a channelling session which often lasts a maximum of 5-7 minutes, some, less than 3. To be able to fill their personal quota of patients, doctors rush through the process because there are only so many hours in a day and so many patients to see. Do you think the specialist has sufficient time to assess a complex illness like cancer in under 3 minutes? Things slip through the cracks this way. And I am proof.
As a starting point, I ask that the Ministry of Health look into imposing a quota on the number of patients a doctor is able to channel privately. My current oncologist, who was in fact the woman who first diagnosed me with cancer has a self-imposed quota. She allows only 8-10 patients to channel her a day and spends a minimum of 30 minutes with each. She has the time to do this without another 22 patients waiting in line to see her for 3 minutes. Shouldn’t this be the way that all consultations go?’ – ee Workers, Cracks
• ‘Post-tax profits at the NDB Bank rose by 32% to Rs3.9billion in the first half of 2021; John Keells revenue rose by 80% to Rs38.80bn in the quarter ending June 2021; post-tax profit at Hayleys in 2020/21 was up by a staggering 400% to Rs14.05bn; Expolanka reported the highest-ever after tax profit of Rs14.8bn in 2020/21; Aitken Spence Group’s non-tourism sectors reported a before-tax profit of Rs5.01bn 2020/21; SLT-Mobitel posted a 29.9% year-on-year growth of after-tax profit of Rs6bn; and Bank of Ceylon said it had surpassed 2020’s total profit of Rs27bn within the first 6 months of 2021.’ – Sunday Times
• They musta used a body double in Texas! ‘In the first purge, Deng was reputed to have been tortured and thrown of an upper story window, leaving him a lifelong paraplegic.’ – EconomyNext, see ee Economists, China
• ‘Beijing took a hammer to its for-profit tutoring sector last month, leading to the closure of companies that helped kids to cram abstract knowledge outside of schools. By contrast, the private sector is being welcomed to take part in vocational colleges that teach practical skills… In a draft vocational education law issued this year, Beijing promised a “fusion of industry and education,” aping Germany’s system, where private companies provide paid internship opportunities.’ – ee Economists, Roadmap
• ‘China is not a free market economy – we tried! We let them into the WTO; we sent them our businesses over there; we made trade deals. They are a controlled top-down economy. You will never compete and win against them unless you take back the means of production. It is way past due for us to do that.’ – Hillary Clinton
• ‘The DPA allows the US president, largely through executive order, to direct private companies to prioritize orders from the federal government. The president is also empowered to “allocate materials, services, and facilities” for national defense purposes, and take actions to restrict hoarding of needed supplies. To bolster domestic production, the president may also offer loans or loan guarantees to companies… make purchases or purchase commitments; and install equipment in government or private factories. Companies can also be authorized to coordinate with each other, which might otherwise violate antitrust laws.’ – ee Focus, ee Industry, US Defense Production Act
A3. Random Notes (‘Seeing Number in Chaos’)_
• US embassy agents, both conscious and ‘innocent’, promote the white version of rock’n’ roll (bereft of its African origins), so loved by local nihilists and anarchists and wannabe superstars. These ‘artistes’ claim to be ‘rebels’ while refusing to ally with the going-to-work everyday working class, who are the only ones who can really change anything permanently – the most creative act!
The ‘gangsta’ genre was set up in the wake of the 1984 Jesse Jackson candidacy for election in the US. It was heavily funded by the white music industry, to muddy such eloquence and music as represented by its high political traditions (represented by Paul Robeson, Willie Dixon, et al). The project was to turn Black rage on itself, calling women ‘hos’, ‘bitches’, etc. It was coterminous with the genocidal wars waged on Black peoples via crack cocaine and the dumping of small arms (not the missiles they use on the rest of the world?), banishing Black people from the ‘creative’ inner-city communities they had created, to the wastelands of exurbia.
These off-white rock’n’rollers in Colombo trace their lineage to so-called hippie idols of 1960s Woodstock and of that ‘Summer of Love,’ that told them to ‘turn on, tune in, drop out and rock on.’ Those heavily promoted ‘idols’ were mostly the trained children of top US business and military men. Posterboy Jim Morrison of The Doors, who wanted people to ‘C’mon baby light my fire’, was the son of US Navy Commander George Morrison, who sparked the 1964 Tonkin Incident that ignited genocidal war on Vietnam and Southeast Asia. The ‘iconoclastic’ Franz Zappa – of The Mothers of Invention, son of a chemical warfare expert, and hero of Vaclav Havel who divided Czechoslovakia – supported a war where more bombs were dropped on 3 agricultural peoples (Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam) than in all the 20th century’s ‘World Wars.’
• Switzerland (Baurs), Germany, Holland are now all rushing forward promising to help us go organic. So they say. Yet their import agents and the media, their defunct agricultural professors, are all against a ban on chemicals. So they are playing the old game of good cop / bad cop.
England and Canada are also providing free lunch packages to school children. How charitable. What if we complete land reform and capture the (mainly rural) home market from their multinational importers, so people can feed themselves, and raise their skills ? They’ll send the bombers!
Baurs is formulating a plan for organic agriculture? Who gave them permission? They who have drenched the country in toxins? It is they who should be interrogated in their hometown of Geneva…
• Geneva resolution? Just ask England’s Unilever, Ceylon Tobacco, US Mastercard, Swiss Baur, Dutch Heineken, India’s IOC – that League of Multinational Corporations in Sri Lanka. These multinationals are corrupting the UN, to undermine its most national membership. The UN should change its name to UM – United Multinationals. When formed in 2018, the LMNC promised to transfer knowledge and technology? 3 years later, let them tell us what they have transferred, other than expensive machinery, experts, and unwanted goods?
• Damn Lies & Media Import Statistics – Media lies are getting more hysterical. It emerges in the deceptive reporting of statistics, distorting every progressive Central Bank policy, as well as distorting news on Covid deaths etc. Contrary to the Wijeya Group Financial Times’ representation of ‘higher’ import deficits, the higher imports of investment and intermediate goods is positive at this stage: see – cbsl.gov.lk/sites/default/files/cbslweb_documents/press/pr/press_20210813_external_sector_performance_2021_june_e.pdf
The Financial Times report on the rise of imports worth $10Billion, but fails to note much of the imports are intermediate and capital goods (fuel, machinery) etc. They do not ask why the much lauded apparel industry imports has so many of its inputs imported and not made here. Here are some excerpts:
Consumer Goods Imports in First Half of 2021 – Total: $1.91nillion: Food & Beverages: $1.14billion, Pharma: $328.2million, Vegetables: $211.1mn, Telecom: $205.3mn, Dairy: 184.4mn, Home Appliances: 139.4mn, Clothing & Accessories: 105.3mn
Intermediate Goods Imports in First Half of 2021 – Total: $5.95Billion: Fuel: 1.8bn, Textiles & Textile Articles: 1.5bn, Chemical products: 567.4million, Base Metals: 354.5mn
Investment Goods Imports in First Half of 2021 – Total: 2.15Billion: Machinery/Equipment: 1.4bn, Building material: 601.6 million
• What kinds of migrant workers do imperialist countries demand? They seek to resolve the contradiction between low labor productivity and wage levels, through: “Production activities whose qualities the machine cannot replicate gain an extended lease of life by the presence of migrants … working for low wages and under substandard conditions. In the capital cities of Europe, workers from Southern Europe, Africa and Asia sweep the streets, collect garbage or are employed in grimy jobs, cleaning furnaces and scraping filth off heavy machinery. Performing unskilled though absolutely vital work, they are ‘one of the saddest and most perplexing problems of modern capitalism’.” – SBD de Silva, The Political Economy of Underdevelopment.
• Sending Covid to the Provinces – The Tamil Nadu government has set up a digital databank of migrant workers employed in industries. The movement of workers from one region to another, came into focus again with the spread of Covid. Organising workers who move from one state to another has been undertaken by the Centre of Indian Trade Unions in India: A Migrant Workers’ Union in Bengal for: ‘3 types – those who go to other states from West Bengal, those who come to W Bengal from other states and those who go abroad, particularly to the Gulf region’.
• The Taliban timed their entry into Kabul for the 102th August anniversary of their expulsion of England from Afghanistan in 1919. Now the US sabotage of their own dupes has set the stage for promoting new chaos on China, Iran and Russia’s borders. Again!
• ‘As for the collapse of the (outgoing) regime, it is most eloquently characterised by the way Ghani fled Afghanistan. 4 cars full of freshly printed US Biden dollars, they tried to stuff another part of the money into a helicopter, but not all of it fit. Some of the money was left lying on the tarmac.’ – ee Sovereignty, Reflections
• The US and NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan has led to much media speculation about what the future holds for the country in the hands of the Taliban (or ‘neo-Taliban’). The current speculation is primarily based on Afghanistan under the Taliban between 1996-2001. While this is convenient, it does not account for the ruptures and the continuities in Afghanistan’s political dynamics and formations that date back to Zahir Shah’s monarchy years, his waning power, and the emergence of Marxist PDPA in 1965. There were differences in ideology and approach within the 2 main factions of the PDPA – the Khalq and Parcham, stemming largely from class dynamics within the Pashtuns, and carried implications for the political, economic and social reforms PDPA implemented after they formed a government. Aththa sheds light on the emerging Islamic fundamentalist elements that coincide with PDPA’s rule, that later become emboldened not only with the support of the US and other Western allies, but also by absorbing a large number of Afghan Pashtuns disgruntled with PDPA’s radical reforms. – http://www.aththa.lk provides a snapshot of the ‘prequel’ to the Taliban era (c 1994).
• So did the US also promote Ultra-Leftism in Afghanistan? In 1979, long before the USSR intervention, the US began to covertly foster Wahhabi extremism in Afghanistan: In the words of Zbigniew Brzezinski – to ‘induce’ a brutal war in order to inflict on ‘the USSR its Vietnam war’, at the casual expense of thoroughly destroying the country and society of the people of Afghanistan for decades.
Robert Gates, former War Secretary under George W Bush and Barack Obama, and former CIA director under George H Bush and Ronald Reagan, stated in his 1996 memoirs From the Shadows that US intelligence services began to aid the opposing factions in Afghanistan 6 months before the Soviet deployment in 1979.
That confirms what Brzezinski, former National Security Adviser to Jimmy Carter and also an adviser to Obama, stated in a 1988 interview:
‘According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979.’
‘But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise. Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.’
‘That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap.. The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter. We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war.’
– Zbigniew Brzezinski, Pres Carter’s National Security Adviser, foreign policy advisor to Obama, Le Nouvel Observateur, Paris, 15-21 Jan 1998
From Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil and Fundamentalism in Central Asia, Ahmed Rashid:
‘The US committed some 4 to 5 billion dollars between 1980-92 in aid to the Mujaheddin… Most of this aid was in the form of lethal modern weaponry… Prior to the war the Islamicists barely had a base in Afghan society, but with money and arms from the CIA pipeline and support from Pakistan, they built one and wielded tremendous clout.’
‘In 1986, CIA chief William Casey… committed CIA support to a long-standing ISI initiative to recruit radical Muslims from around the world to come to Pakistan and fight with the Afghan Mujaheddin. The ISI had encouraged this since 1982… Between 1982-92, some 35,000 Muslim radicals from 43 Islamic countries in the Middle East, North and East Africa, Central Asia and the Far East would pass their baptism under fire with the Afghan Mujaheddin. 10,000s more foreign Muslim radicals [including Rohingya from Myanmar] came to study in the 100s of new madrassas that Zia’s military government began to fund in Pakistan and along the Afghan border. Eventually more than 100,000 Muslim radicals were to have direct contact with Pakistan and Afghanistan and be influenced by the jihad.’
These Wahhabi extremists then metastasized into Al Qaeda / ISIS / ETIM etc. that have since been used in places like Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Sri Lanka, etc.’
• Her Majesty’s Murderers still Roam our Seas – England’s military’s overseas base network involves 145 sites in 42 countries in 2021. It is still a vampirical Empire. The US and England have a tight intelligence alliance within the ‘5 Eyes’, with the division of the world into spheres of responsibility. England is in charge of – among others ‘the Near and Middle East’. Afghanistan apparently falls into the English sphere.
• Noose of Pearls? The US kicked off more naval war games against China in the Indian Ocean, on August 10, leading 20 other nations in Southeast Asia Cooperation and Training (SEACAT) military exercises starting off in Singapore. The US Indo-Pacific Command (INDOPACOM) said: Sri Lanka, Australia, Bangladesh, Brunei, Canada, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Maldives, New Zealand, Philippines, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, England and Vietnam joined in.
From August 2-27, US INDOPACOM is also leading the Large Scale Global Exercise 21, with England, Japan and Australia in the Indo-Pacific (which stretches from Sri Lanka, India to across the Pacific Ocean). The US also conducted its most extensive amphibious military exercises in 40 years. The similarly named Large Scale Exercise (LSE) 2021, spanning 17 time zones and involving 5 numbered fleets, with only the US military, started on August 3 and concluded on August 16. (see ee Sovereignty, SEACAT)
‘In 2011, the Obama Administration program “Pivot to Asia.” Began moving two-thirds of US naval forces to the Asia-Pacific and to surrounding China, locating 400 US bases from Australia to Japan, Korea, and across Eurasia to Afghanistan and India. Not surprisingly, China has greatly upgraded its military arsenal to an estimated 260 nuclear weapons. In comparison, however, the US has approximately 1,500 deployed nuclear weapons and 4,000 stockpiled.’ (ee Sovereignty, Nuclear).
Their local media agents instead attacked China, claiming ‘the yellow peril + red menace’ was sitting up a ‘string of pearls’, of military bases across Asia, including China.
• War Games in the Americas – ‘There was a deafening silence throughout the Caribbean region, during the recent Operation Tradewinds, June 13-25, Progressive and Pan-African forces did not utter a word, as soldiers from Guyana, Brazil, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago participated in this region-wide military exercise with army personnel from the US, England, Canada, France, Netherlands.’ (ee Sovereignty, Tradewinds)
B. Special Focus__
B1. The iPhone, the State Military & Education
The US has 2 conflicting tradition: the activist industrial policies of Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804) and Thomas Jefferson’s (1743-1826) freedom and small government talk. They resolved this dialectic by ‘putting the Jeffersonians in charge of the rhetoric and the Hamiltonians in charge of policy’.
It is Hamilton’s industrial policies that made the US a powerful country. Our intellectuals and fake artists only talk of ‘freedom’ for themselves. They ignore that any freedom needs an industrial economy to undergird it. This involves a political, economic and military strategy.
US high-technology companies received 1) Direct equity investment from their government; 2) Access to technologies resulted from major government research programs, military initiatives, public procurement contracts, and public research institutions, all backed by state or federal dollars; 3) Creation of tax, trade and technology policies helped US companies such as Apple capture local & world markets. Before launching its popular iOS platform products, Apple received enormous and early direct and/or indirect government support.
Behind the US rhetoric of private sector-led wealth creation, their State has funded entrepreneurial risk to spur innovation. This included the internet and DARPA (US government’s Defense Advanced Research Project Agency), SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research), Orphan Drug Act (in US, EU) and the National Nanotechnology Initiative. The State actively shaped the market to drive innovation.
After their WW2, the US Pentagon (War Department) worked closely with other national security agencies like the Atomic Energy Commission and NASA to develop technologies such as computers, jet planes, civilian nuclear energy, lasers, biotechnology. The Advanced Research Project (later DARPA) was set up to give the US wide technological superiority and control through the internet.
The USSR’s launching of Sputnik in 1957 was used to spread panic among US policymakers, and led to the so-called ‘arms race’ and DARPA in 1958, to fund futuristic technologies.
DARPA funded new university computer science departments for semiconductor researchers, human-computer interface researchers and the early internet, by 1962, leading to the personal computer.
In the 1970s, DARPA funded the University of Southern California laboratory to develop computer chip fabrication. Anyone who possessed a superior design for a new microchip could have the chips fabricated at their laboratory: giving birth to the fake myth of ‘hip’ Silicon Valley private entrepreneurs.
So while Reagan the Hollywood actor was promoting ‘small’ government around the world (and igniting big wars in Central America, West Asia), his administration, set up the Small Business Innovation Research program requiring government agencies to provide over $2billion per year to take new technologies from the laboratory to the market via ‘small’ businesses.
In 1983, the Orphan Drug Act funded products for treating rare conditions, helping the rise of massive bio-pharmaceutical and biotech giants like Novartis, Roche, Johnson & Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer, etc.
Since the 1990s the US government has been providing billions of dollar$ to the National Nanotechnology Initiative, using scientists and engineers at the National Science Foundation to ‘spawn the growth of future industrial productivity’.
Capitalists generally are simply not interested in innovation. They want quick profits. It is the state that always leads the way.
(Info: Mariana Mazzucato, The entrepreneurial state debunking public vs private sector myths)
B2. The US Treasury Department, the IMF, World Bank, Central Banks & Reuters
Ajmal Ahmady was the CB Governor of Afghanistan (DAB). Until August 16, he was happily seated in his AC office in Kabul, tweeting about him strengthening Central Bank oversight of the banking sector, linking to all financial institutions, and resolving ‘international payment issues’. In June, he proudly announced Afghanistan had successfully passed the first IMF ECF review, which stated ‘The authorities continued to demonstrate strong program ownership… DAB has ample reserves to deal with any macroeconomic shock… In a market economy, currency fluctuations are normal.’
On July 12, he tweeted, ‘Had a very productive meeting last week with US Treasury Acting Assistant Secretary Ahern.’ His twittering then paused, and resumed August 16, on ‘Taliban’s rapid advance’: ‘multiple rumors that directions to not fight were somehow coming from above…
‘Seems difficult to believe, but there remains a suspicion as to why [the armed forces] left posts so quickly… something left unexplained… Currency volatility and other indicators had worsened, but DAB were able to stabilize the macroeconomic environment… Then came last Thursday (13)… I attended my normal meetings. Ghazni fell in the morning…On 14th we received a call that given the deteriorating environment, we wouldn’t get any more dollar shipments…’
Saturday (15), DAB had to supply less currency to the markets, which further increased panic… Currency spiked from a stable 81 to almost 100 then back to 86. I held meetings to reassure banks & money exchangers to calm them down. I can’t believe that was one day before Kabul fell. On Saturday night, my family called to say most government had already left. I was dumbfounded… I got worried & purchased tickets for Monday as a precaution…
On Sunday (16) I began work. Reports throughout morning were increasingly worrisome. I left the bank and left deputies in charge. Felt terrible about leaving staff. But arrived at airport & saw Mohaqeq, Rahmani, Massoud, etc were already there! Head of parliament seems content… Saw VP Danish leaving – reportedly for Qatar. By then it was rumored Vice President Saleh had left…
Then the floor fell: the President had already left… I knew right then my flight would be cancelled and there would be chaos. As expected employees & military left posts. Everyone ran through gates to on a Kam Air flight… The plane had no fuel or pilot. We all hoped it would depart. However, I decided to disembark and spotted another military plane. It was surrounded by people trying to board, while the guard forces held people back and boarded their embassy staff. There was a rush. Some shots were fired. Somehow, my close colleagues pushed me on board. It did not have to end this way.
I am disgusted by the lack of any planning by Afghan leadership. Saw at airport them leave without informing others. I asked the palace if there was an evacuation plan/charter flights. After 7 years of service, I was met with silence. During last days I feared not only risks related to Taliban, but fear of transition period once there is no chain of command. Once president’s departure was announced, I knew within minutes chaos would follow. I cannot forgive him for creating that without a transition plan… He himself had great ideas but poor execution. If I contributed to that, I take my share of the blame.
And this. I will be trying to support any requests for assistance, but worry that given my personal experience at airport that any support for friends and colleagues be limited. Did I have a reason to worry? This is the text someone sent me: ‘Taliban come to <area> and were looking for you. They were asking about Ajmal Ahmady DAB Governor… Whatever their personal views, I also had many personal enemies. Or maybe they just wanted to greet me..
Aug18 (Mon), Ahmady tweeted: ‘This thread is to clarify the location of DAB (Central Bank of Afghanistan) international reserves. I am writing this because I have been told Taliban are asking DAB staff about location of assets. If this is true – it is clear they urgently need to add an economist on their team. First, total DAB reserves were approximately $9billion as of last week. But this doesn’t mean DAB held $9bn physically in our vault. As per international standards, most assets are held in safe, liquid assets such as Treasuries and gold. The major investment categories include the following assets (all figures in billions):
1) US Federal Reserve = $7.0b, US bills/bonds: $3.1b, US World Bank Reserve Advisory & Management Partnership assets: $2.4b, Gold: $1.2b, Cash accounts: $0.3b. 2) International accounts = 1.3b. 3) Bank for International Settlements (Switzerland) = $0.7b
An interesting note was the IMF had approved a SDR650billion allocation recently. DAB was set to receive approximately $340million August 23. Not sure if that allocation will now proceed with respect to Afghanistan. Given Afghanistan’s large current account deficit, DAB was reliant on obtaining physical shipments of cash every few weeks. The amount of such cash remaining is close to zero due a stoppage of shipments as the security situation deteriorated, especially during the last few days’. [The Biden administration last week cancelled bulk shipments of dollars headed for Afghanistan as Taliban fighters were poised to take control of the capital city of Kabul]
For the first time, I therefore had to limit USD access to both banks & $ auctions to conserve remaining DAB dollars. We also put out a circular placing maximum withdrawal limits per customer. During the day, the Afghani depreciated. Saturday (15) noon, I met with President Ghani to explain the expected Sunday dollar shipment would not arrive. On Saturday evening, President Ghani spoke with Secretary Blinken to request dollar shipments to resume. In principle it was approved.
Again, seems ridiculous in retrospect, but did not expect Kabul to fall by Sunday evening. In any case, the next shipment never arrived. Seems like our partners had good intelligence as to what was going to happen. Please note, in no way were Afghanistan’s international reserves ever compromised. Assets are all held at US Fed, Swiss BIS, US RAMP, or other bank accounts. Easily audited. We had a program with both IMF and Treasury that monitored assets. No money was stolen from any reserve account.
Given that the Taliban are still on international sanction lists, it is expected (confirmed?) that such assets will be frozen and not accessible to Taliban. I can’t imagine a scenario where the US Treasury / Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) would give Taliban access to such funds. Therefore, we can say the accessible funds to the Taliban are perhaps 0.1-0.2% of Afghanistan’s total international reserves. Not much. Without US Treasury approval, it is also unlikely that any donors would support the Taliban government.
I believe local banks have told customers they cannot return their dollars – because DAB has not supplied banks with dollars. This is true. Not because funds have been stolen or being held in vault, but because all dollars are in international accounts that have been frozen. Taliban should note this was in no way the decision of DAB or its professional staff. It is a direct result of US sanctions policy implemented by OFAC. Taliban and their backers should have foreseen this result Taliban won militarily – but now have to govern. It is not easy.
Therefore, my base case would be the following: US Treasury freezes assets. Taliban have to implement capital controls and limit dollar access. Currency will depreciate. Inflation will rise as currency pass through is very high. This will hurt the poor as food prices increase
The collapse of the Government in Afghanistan this past week was so swift and complete – it was disorienting and difficult to comprehend. This is how the events seemed to proceed from my perspective as Central Bank Governor…’
News Stories –IMF Spokesperson on Afghanistan tweeted: ‘As is always the case, the IMF is guided by the views of the international community. There is currently a lack of clarity within the international community regarding recognition of government in Afghanistan, as a consequence of which the country cannot access SDRs or other IMF resources… this comes as the Treasury Dept is taking steps to prevent the Taliban from accessing SDRs, according to a US Treasury official.
Reuters then inadvertently reported, this ‘international community’ is really the US Treasury Department!: ‘The IMF said on August 18, Afghanistan will not be able to access IMF resources, including a new allocation of Special Drawing Rights reserves, due to a lack of clarity.’
WhatsApp then shut down the Taliban helpline number in Afghanistan, which would help people report looting and violence, and YouTube cracked down on Taliban accounts…
UN member states have told the UN’s ‘Analytical Support & Sanctions Monitoring Team’, external financial support, including donations from wealthy individuals and a network of non-governmental charitable foundations, also account for a significant part of the Taliban income.
The Taliban now collects all taxes and controls customs and border crossings. It controls the central bank and commercial banks. It will impose taxes and extract its share from the massive illegal Hawala transfer network that serves as Afghanistan’s de facto banking system, and formalize its collections from the booming illicit opium and heroin trade and the country’s methamphetamine production.
The Taliban, which controlled mining in 280 zones across 26 provinces earlier this year, now controls all 704 mining zones across Afghanistan’s 34 provinces.
A 2017 report by the Afghan government has estimated the total value of the mineral wealth of the country, including fossil fuels at $3trillion. All this now belongs to the Taliban.. It could take years before the infrastructure is ready to exploit the mineral reserves fully.
But more than the total control over Afghanistan’s natural resources, tax system, banking, drug trade, money laundering network, the Taliban would be happy about the $84billion worth of US military hardware and assets that have fallen in its hands…
B3. The USA, Industry & War
After the US invaded Korea, the US Defense Production Act of 1950, which is still in force, established the Office of Defense Mobilization, instituted wage and price controls, strictly regulated production in heavy industries such as steel and mining, prioritized and allocated industrial materials in short supply, and ordered the dispersal of wartime manufacturing plants across the nation.
The DPA established the US aluminum and titanium industries, provided capital and interest-free loans, and arranged mining and manufacturing resources as well as skilled workers.
The DPA ensured that government-funded industries were geographically dispersed across the US to prevent the industrial base’s destruction from a single nuclear attack. The DPA was then used to diversify the US energy mix by funding the trans-Alaskan pipeline, the US synthetic fuels corporation, and research into liquefied natural gas.
In the 1980s, the DPA provided seed money to develop new technologies and materials, including silicon carbide ceramics, indium phosphide and gallium arsenide semiconductors, microwave power tubes, radiation-hardened microelectronics, superconducting wire, metal composites, and the mining and processing of rare earth minerals.
In 2011, the DPA forced telecom companies to provide detailed information to the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security on the use of foreign-manufactured hardware and software in the companies’ networks, to combat cyberespionage.
In 2017, the DPA classified 2 sets of products as ‘critical to national defense’: The first referenced ‘items affecting aerospace structures and fibers, radiation-hardened microelectronics, radiation test and qualification facilities, and satellite components and assemblies’. The second referenced ‘items affecting adenovirus vaccine production capability; high strength, inherently fire and ballistic resistant, co-polymer aramid fibers industrial capability; secure hybrid composite shipping container industrial capability; 3D ultra-high density microelectronics for information protection industrial capability’.
In 2020, DPA defined ventilators and protective equipment as ‘essential to the national defense’. DPA classified ‘health and medical resources necessary to respond to the spread of Covid-19’ to prohibit hoarding and price gouging. The DPA then demanded General Motors to accept and prioritize contracts for needed ventilators, and required 3M, General Electric and Medtronic to increase its production of N95 respirators.
The DPA then mandated that plants producing beef, pork, poultry and eggs stay open, giving the government extraordinary powers to ensure firms maintain production.
In 2021, the DPA increased production of health supplies such as protective equipment, and to supply equipment to Merck facilities needed to safely manufacture Johnson & Johnson vaccines.
The US Defense Production Act authorized a system of priorities and allocations for requisitioning materials and facilities, provide funds to expand productive capacity and supply, provide for price and wage stabilization, settle labor disputes, strengthen controls over credit, to facilitate the production of goods and services necessary for national security, etc. Since 1950 the Act has been reauthorized over 50 times and periodically amended,
The Act first of 3 major sections, authorizes the president to require businesses to accept and prioritize contracts for materials deemed necessary for war, regardless of a loss incurred in business. The law also allows the president to designate materials to be prohibited from hoarding or price gouging.
Any person who performs any act prohibited or wilfully fails to perform any act required by the Defense Production Act may be charged and fined up to $10,000 or imprisoned for up to one year or both.
The 2nd section authorizes the president to establish mechanisms (eg regulations, orders or agencies) to allocate materials, services and facilities to promote national defense.
The 3rd section authorizes the president to control the civilian economy so that scarce and critical materials necessary to the national defense effort are available for defense needs.
The Act also authorizes the President to requisition property, force industry to expand production and the supply of basic resources, settle labor disputes, control consumer and real estate credit, establish contractual priorities, and allocate raw materials towards national defense.
The president’s designation of products is used by the Department of Defense (DoD). Most of the other functions of the Act are administered by the Office of Strategic Industries and Economic Security in the Bureau of Industry and Security in the Dept of Commerce. The Defense Priorities and Allocations System institutes a rating system for contracts and purchase orders.
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.
• Work together in unity as a team to defeat the COVID-19 pandemic.
• England Wants Rerun Of War On Afghanistan; wants to Save Women
‘Stories about alleged Taliban acts ‘against Afghan women’ will now again get special features. Women have been used to sell the long war on Afghanistan since its very beginning’
• US Expats want US Pacific Command (USINPACCOM) to install medical units in SL
• Rajapaksa LA In-Law to be named Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the US
‘Consultations led to the unsolicited entry of a US company, New Fortress Energy, to take over the LNG power installation at Kerawalapitiya.’
• Chinese Premier, Li Keiqiang to visit Colombo next month.
• Silence Over LTTE Execution Ground
• Sampanthan meeting with President in June and dinner with US Ambassador leaked by TNA
‘Sampanthan has the complete confidence of India’
• Sumanthriran and GL Peries dinner with US envoy doesn’t go down well with rest of TNA
• Adaikalanathan: TNA talks with govt. on Tamil people’s welfare, but no secret deals
• Indian High Commission celebrates their Independence Day in Jaffna, Kandy and Hambantota
• Indian Government Recalls Fallen IPKF soldiers in Jaffna on Indian National Day
• Erasing the Eelam Victory Part 23B&C
• England denies its colonial crimes from India to China
• Taliban denies links to LTTE – Easwaran
• Modi Government Shows How Not to Memorialise Partition
• The Flight from Kabul and the Legacy of General Soleimani
‘Iran has strong reason to believe that the sudden withdrawal of western forces was designed to create instability and chaos in Afghanistan.’
• Afghanistan and US Imperialism
‘The US is pulling out because, for the first time since 1945, it has decided to cut its costs in less strategic areas in order to be able to finance the growing costs of empire elsewhere.’
• US President Carter poured millions to use Islamists as proxies to fight the Soviets
• History of the Taliban
‘Former Afghan President Ghani was a World Bank bureaucrat who spent most of his life in the USA’
• Reflections on Events in Afghanistan 1,2,3 & 4
‘Over the past twenty years, the US supposedly trained the Afghan army by NATO standards, 300000 strong, but when the battle was joined in May, it began crumbling under Taliban pressure.’
• The Angry Arab: US Defeat in Afghanistan — A Contrast With the Soviet Experience
• US Creates More Chaos in Afghanistan
• US Media blames Corruption for Afghanistan Meltdown
• Canadian military lands in Afghanistan
‘Northern Lights Canada has been working with hundreds of former interpreters…have complained for weeks about IRCC’s handling of the crisis.’
• England’s war Secretary breaks down during radio interview, sends 900 English troops
• ‘Afghanistan: The End of the Occupation’
‘the rhetoric of saving Afghan women has been widely used to justify the occupation, and many feminists in Afghanistan have chosen the side of the occupation’
• How Russia-China Are Stage-Managing the Taliban
• Russia, China circle the wagons. Iran is in it.
• US VP Harris faces task of convincing Asia of US reliability after Afghan chaos
‘conflict with a near-peer competitor will be accelerated as the counterterrorism mindset recedes,” said Bonnie Glaser of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, referring to China.
• Counter Western Bias Against China by Remembering Peter Norman’s Solidarity
• The New Cold War on China
• Corporate-funded think-tank reveals how profit motives drive New Cold War against China
• Nuclear Arms Race in Asia-Pacific: Denuclearize in Solidarity with Hiroshima & Nagasaki
• RAND Corp: Best way for US to backfoot Russia and China is to be baffling and unpredictable
• Lebanon paying the price for Hezbollah’s military capability
• COVID-19 vaccines produced in Africa by J&J were secretly exported to Europe, reports say
• Tigrayans Speak Out in Support of Ethiopia and Prime Minister Abiy, not the TPLF
• Operation Tradewinds: Collective Militarized White Supremacy & Black Neocolonialism in Caribbean
• Once Again, the Vultures Circle Haiti
‘Another earthquake in Haiti provides another opportunity for the NGO community, the Haitian oligarchy, and foreign imperialists to consolidate their profits and power
• Peru: A Coup Brewing
• Cuba, China, Latin America and the World
• Descendants Sue Montgomery County to Stop the Human Trafficking of Black Bodies: Laundering of Black Flesh for The For-Profit Market
• 100,000s Spent Summer of 2021 Maskless in US – During Worst Pandemic Since 1918
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.
• Taliban Fighters Reportedly Using US Anti-Tank Missiles to Down Helicopters
• US Dept of Justice recommended planned cable by Google and Facebook bypass Hong Kong.
‘Google and Facebook this week unveiled plans for a new undersea internet cable connecting Singapore, Japan, Guam, the Philippines, Taiwan and Indonesia.’
• Delta, Drugs, Dematagoda, Data, Disorder and Deluge
‘the Delta virus arrived in Sri Lanka with the smugglers of heroin, or Kerala Ganja’
• Mandatory vaccination: Former Human Rights Chief backs the move
• Determined enforcement – Sri Lanka’s need of the hour in Intellectual Property Protection
• SSP Nihal Thalduwa appointed as new Police Media Spokesman
• Human Rights Watch levels serious allegations against SL police
‘Human Rights Watch last week called on the Scottish national force to “suspend assistance programmes until there is progress on accountability and reform” in the country’
• Exposé: Duplicity of a Fake Expert
• Several clauses in Finance Bill inconsistent with the Constitution – SC
• US-funded Bar Association Opposes Sri Lanka Judges’ Institute Webinar
• Prez has no ‘legislative power’ to proscribe civil orgs under PTA: Islamic Students Movement
• Sisters-at-Law free legal service supports survivors of domestic and gender-based violence
‘honoured with Commonwealth Points of Light Award in 2020 and Women of Courage (2019) from the US Department of State’
• Weapons caches discovered from Weligama
• Sri Lanka College of Psychiatrists says homosexuality no illness, calls for decriminalisation
• Almost assassination of President and Prime Minister
• US President Joe Biden Opens Gate For Taliban – Major Threat Looming For Sub-Continent
• Ranil tells govt. to beware of Afghanistan fallout
• Muslim-Sinhala Riots in Beruwela in 1991
‘racist mobs have to be handled differently to mobs which espouse other causes’
• Pegasus & How the Israeli State Militarises Cyber Technology
‘Pegasus is spyware built by an Israeli organisation called NSO Group, which claims it only sells to governments’
• Prince Charles in Scotland for “crunch talks” with brother Andrew sued for raping a minor
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.
• How Sri Lankan banks are failing the production economy
‘there is need for bipartisan consensus on establishing commodity production as the foundation of a healthy market economy.’
• A Target On its Back: Sri Lanka, Trade and Geopolitics in the Biden Era
‘within the ‘neo-liberal’ free-trade model…while the EU has emerged as a lead destination for Sri Lankan exports, the USA is still Sri Lanka’s main export market.’
• Sri Lanka’s Currency Swaps Explained
‘The simple reason to obtain a currency swap is to tackle foreign exchange shortfalls in the short term’
• Deciphering Port City of Colombo
‘It is therefore imperative that the income tax regime that is applicable to Sri Lankan businesses continue in order to fund the welfare state’
• Is Dr. N.M. Perera’s Solution of the 1970-75 Economic Crisis the Answer To Today’s Crisis ?
‘Local market price has gone up due to massive profiteering by middlemen in Sri Lanka, specially millers and traders. Further the farmers are in the grip of money lenders as they are in a state of chronic debt. NM took measures to relieve rural debt. All essentials were supplied through a ration card at low prices through the Cooperative system that was functioning well. Producer and Consumer Cooperatives dealt with each other, getting rid of profiteering by middlemen (traders, millers etc.) in the process’
• Result of killing the emerging capitalist class in the post-independent history – Abeyratne
• Small-scale entrepreneur women as suppliers of finished products – Wijewardena
• Rupee under stress as trade deficit expands – Colombage
‘The Governor further stated that the exchange rate is the price which affects not only imports and exports, but also various other things including people’s cost of living and the Government’s debt burden. Hence, he emphasised the need to avoid a substantial depreciation of the rupee.’
• Monetary meltdown unless money printing stopped: Bellwether
• Sri Lanka central bank still not decided on possible Zimbabwe-style parastatal facility
• Ceylon Chamber of Commerce wants Govt’s more consultative approach to policymaking
• MSMEs lobby group urges President to lockdown for two weeks
‘Confederation of Micro, Small and Medium Industry…membership of over 8,000, including a strong women entrepreneur network of over 4,500 successful women-led businesses.’
• Short-term lockdown will not cripple the economy: Dr. Harsha
‘Says Govt. must not forget that it is about the lives of the people, not money’
• Importance of focusing on personal finance in a volatile economy
‘Speakers included Yvette Fernando, Deputy Governor, Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Manohari Gunawardhena, Asian Development Bank (ADB), Dilshan Rodrigo, Hatton National Bank, Shiran Fernando, Chief Economist, The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and moderator Mr. Asitha Pinnaduwa’
• Real Independence Means People Getting their Purchasing Power Back: Prabhat Patnaik
‘The Indian economy has developed at the cost of the poor under successive governments. The big question is whether India has ever got freedom from neoliberalism?’
• Equality and Scarcity: Why Socialism Fared Better Than Capitalism
‘Despite long consumer queues, there was greater equality in income distribution under socialism, unlike capitalism, where free access to goods is founded upon extreme income inequality.’
• A roadmap for China’s crackdowns can be found in Germany
‘China wants to become a developed economy without losing its industrial base. Beijing’s five-year economic plan released in March contains no target for the consumption share of the economy, but it does pledge to keep the share generated by manufacturing “basically stable” at 25%. That echoes the German model, where manufacturing accounts for about 18% of economic output, compared with about 11% in the US, according to the World Bank.’
• Ideological and Class Contradictions in China’s Education Sector – David
‘The commanding heights of ‘old’ economy (oil, minerals, energy, heavy industry) are exclusively state owned. Entrepreneurship and new technology (export industry, high-tech, and finance-capital) are predominantly in the hands of a new capitalist class’
• Excerpt from Amartya Sen memoir, ‘Home in the World’.
• China’s ‘capitalism’ came in tiny steps, expert tells Sri Lanka forum
• Mexico’s Move to Shunt out Neoliberal Agenda Holds Lessons for India
• Productivity—why Canada lags behind the US
‘the biggest factor is the notable difference in the amount spent on machines, tools, and technologies (capital) per worker—what economists call “capital intensity”. As of the first half of 2019, Canadian businesses spent about $13,000 per worker on capital, while their US counterparts spent $20,500.’
• Canada’s debt-to-GDP ratio alarming. What happened the last time we were in this situation?
• The relative decline of US imperialism – Roberts
‘the dollar continues to dominate and remains the currency to hold in a slump, as we saw in dot.com bust and slump of 2001 & in the emerging market commodity slump & euro debt crisis of 2011-14. The relative decline of the dollar will continue….’
• Requests for $3 billion in US Treasury Gold – The Trigger that Closed the Gold Window
• The Covid-19 Pandemic Has Added $19.5 Trillion to Global Debt
‘corporations, emboldened by unprecedented government support for markets, are selling bonds like never before. The borrowing binge has come with a hefty price tag—$19.5 trillion last year alone, according to Institute of International Finance estimates.’
• Explaining 21st-Century Capitalism in a Way Everyone Can Understand – Wolff
• Farewell to Bourgeois Kings
‘How long it will take for their institutions to disappear, or before they end up toppled by popular discontent and revolution, no one can know. But at this point, I think most people on some level now understand that it really is only a matter of time’
C4. Economy (Usually reported in monetary terms)
ee Economy section shows how the economy is usually measured by false indices like GDP, etc, and in monetary terms, confusing money and capital, while calling for privatization and deregulation, their constant moaning about debt and balance of payments without stating the need for industrial production to overcome such issues, etc.
• Food stuck in Colombo Port to be released immediately
• Central Bank helping clear containers stuck at port without forex: Governor
• Sri Lanka imposes cap on money accumulating in dollar accounts
• The economy cannot take any more shocks
‘lockdowns entail huge socio-economic costs such as job losses, pay cuts, massive drops in national production and the foreign exchange inflow, etc’
• Producers grapple with over 10% price increase across supply chains in June
• Grey market suspected for recent weakness in remittance inflows
• CB to probe banks’ planned higher charges for overseas transactions via debit, credit cards
• Heavy arbitraging to force CB’s intervention: Rs. 257 to the US$ Under the Table
‘seriously considering intervening in the open market operations amidst heavy arbitraging by both the formal and informal financial sectors in the wake of the foreign exchange crisis’
• Sri Lanka ‘official’ exchange rate unchanged CB Governor says, amid parallel rates
• Chamber wants flexible exchange rate for exporters
• Sri Lanka exports surpass US $ 1 billion mark in July 2021
• Sri Lanka to keep Treasury auction ceiling yields: CB Governor
• Sri Lanka central bank denies ‘devaluation’ claims
• Sri Lanka Central Bank becomes first in Asia to tighten policy in pandemic-era
• Ceylon Chamber expects “tight” Budget 2022
• Govt. to adopt new mechanism to fast-track FDIs
• Inland Revenue Department Unions warn of Rs. 300b loss if tax amnesty is not changed
• Sri Lanka inks Rs. 61.5B Term Facility with China Development Bank
‘The government can use it for whatever purpose since the credit facility is not channelled through the Central Bank for budgetary support. Government will disburse some of it for developmental needs’
• Bangladesh to release $50m to SL this week out of $250m swap
• Govt. to receive USD 780 mn via IMF SDR facility to get over COVID difficulties
• 1H imports top $10 billion mark after 30% rise: Mostly Capital and Intermediate Goods
‘Intermediate goods import like fuel up 48.5%’
• Sri Lanka’s trade deficit
‘with China crosses US$2bn in H1, with India at US$1.7bn, trade surplus with US, England & EU’
• CB needs to check money printing to ensure policy cuts work, says Softlogic Stockbrokers
• Panic buying of petrol, diesel in Sri Lanka as money printing drives forex shortages
• US freezes nearly $9.5bn of Afghan Central Bank reserves to block Taliban access to funds
‘Washington also stopped shipments of cash to Kabul as part of an effort to prevent a Taliban-led government from accessing money’
• Afghanistan Situation: Trade with India to Take Big Hit, Say Exporters
‘Afghan exports to India include dried raisin, walnut, almond, fig, pine nut, pistachios, dried apricot and fresh fruits such as apricot, cherry, watermelon, and medicinal herbs. India’s outbound shipments to that country include tea, coffee, pepper and cotton’
• Imports in Afghanistan decreased
‘petroleum (33% of total imports), machinery and equipment (15%), food items (14%) and base metals and related articles (9%). Main import partners are: Pakistan (14% of total imports), Russia (13%), Uzbekistan (11%), Iran (9.1%) and China (9%). Others include: Turkmenistan, Japan and Kazakhstan.’
• S’pore’s reopening focused on retaining business hub status, valuing public health stability
• IMF Disburses $488 Million to Angola, Backs Plan to Cut Debt
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
• Supreme Court rules completion of employee’s work should be determined by employer
‘it is a matter for the employer, not the employee, to decide whether the work for the day of an employee was completed or not… further held that once an employee reports to work the common norm is that the employee would remain in his or her workstation until the end of duty hours.’
• Allow hiring flexibility – Anila Dias Bandaranaike
‘former Assistant Governor and Director of Statistics of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka. She served on the Delimitation Commission of Sri Lanka from 2015 to 2020.’
• Slash salaries to support daily wage earners, Prasanna Ranatunga proposes to President
‘Proposes 75% cut from MPs, 50% from public and private sector and 30% from minor worker salaries during lockdown period’
• Tens of thousands of daily wage earners lack income
• Sathosa to distribute relief packages from tomorrow
• ‘Prez reluctant to lockdown country because of the poor’
• Govt. and WFP provide food rations to children missing out on school meals
‘The Government of Canada redirected $ 200,000 (approximately Rs. 40 million) from its planned projects to assist WFP and the Government of Sri Lanka in procuring one month’s worth of rations for 41,000 school children. The Government of Japan redirected 189 MT of canned fish which was initially donated for the in-school meals and will now be included in the ration packs for 220,000 families, providing children with vital protein in their diet.’
• Health Trade Union Confederation issues ultimatum
• New sub-committee appointed to resolve teacher’s salary
• Sri Lanka has a relatively large proportion of elderly population.
• JVP: Expat Lankans will stop remittances unless govt. solves their problems
‘On average, they send home around 550 million a month’
• Migrant workers who lost valuable goods on X-Press Pearl appeal to Govt. for compensation
• IOM, Australia support repatriation of stranded Sri Lankan migrant workers from Kuwait
‘1.5 million SL migrant workers are employed overseas and statistics derived from SLBFE indicate that in 2018, less-skilled and domestic worker categories represented 55.2% of the total departures for foreign employment from SL. The Middle East continues to be the main destination for SL migrant workers with approximately 97.4% of domestic workers and 78% of low-skilled category workers concentrated in Kuwait, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the UAE.’
• The State of emergency and emergences: Democratising education
• Cracks in the Health System
‘A bunch of residents and an SR collectively scarred me badly, without supervision in the OR’
• Rocking the Illegal Dhonis!
‘Our seas are being looted by Indian fishing trawlers. Covid strains arrive surreptitiously by boat. The US-led Quad (Pentagon plus) promotes war games to block Asian and African trade. The Australian state provides expertise to prevent darkies from improving their gene pool’
• Chartered Institute of Personnel Management 5th International Research Symposium
• England Study Group’s new Quarantine Fund to strengthen employability offering for SL students
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.
• Is this agriculture’s funeral march?
• Govt. approves US $ 500mn project to improve agricultural supply chains
• 161 registered owners allowed to buy paddy, but small millers say path cleared for kingpins
• Cabinet nod to import rice from Pakistan to address rice shortage
• Prices of bakery items to increase from Monday (23); Bread Prices up by Rs. 05/-
• Govt. to set up rice mills as private-cooperative partnerships to counter exorbitant prices
• Finance Ministry mulls reduction of milk powder taxes
‘Milk powder stocks are being imported mainly from New Zealand and Australia and other countries including Denmark, the Netherlands and India… NZ’s Fonterra is the largest importer…’
• 550 sugar containers released from Customs detention
• Addressing misconceptions on agricultural practices in tea plantations – Roshan Rajadurai
‘Managing Director of the Plantation Sector of Hayleys PLC (which comprise Kelani Valley Plantations, Talawakelle Tea Estates and Horana Plantations). A former Chairman of the Planters’ Association of Ceylon’
• Coconut Growers Association demand importing inorganic (chemical) fertiliser
• Confusion and uncertainty on banning chemical fertiliser – Sunday Times
• Baurs to put together scientific and practical plan for Sri Lanka’s agri-ecosystem
‘Local EU representative and agriculturist Chandana Hewawasam including officials from GIZ Sri Lanka (German Agency for International Cooperation), and Deputy Ambassador of the Embassy of Switzerland…. Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) and School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences (HAFL) and contracted by A. Baur & Co.’
• Germany supports Sri Lanka to access EU market for organic products
• Netherlands Embassy releases latest report on opportunities in Lankan horticulture sector
‘Rizvi Zaheed, former Managing Director of Hayleys Agriculture, along with Chandula Abeywickrema, current Chairman of People’s Merchant Finance and the team members of Lanka Impact Investing Network (LIIN) conducted the study. The Senior Policy Advisor for Agriculture at the Embassy, Nishan Dissanayake coordinated the project on behalf of the Dutch Embassy.’
• SL generates 7 000 tonnes of solid waste per day; 66% perishable organic material.
• Complaints against errant officers pour in, Environment Minister sets up of flying squad
• 4 new sensitive ecological zones: Manewa, Gangewadiya, Eluwankulama and Galnewa
• Canoeing down the Kalu Ganga
C7. Industry (False definitions, anti-industrial sermons, rentier/entrepreneur, etc)
ee Industry notes the ignorance about industrialization (versus handicraft and manufacture), the dependence on importing foreign machinery, the need to make machines that make machines, build a producer culture. False definitions of industry, entrepreneur, etc, abound, and the need for a holistic political, economic and military strategy to overcome the domination by merchants and moneylenders.
• England’s HSBC launches Project CORE to grab mineral-rich Thanthirimale
• 80% of SMEs get their business by working in partnership with larger export firms
• June industrial production edges up but nowhere near March highs – Daily Mirror
• Sinopharm vaccine was delayed by the National Medicines Regulatory Authority (NMRA)
• Health Minister declares Maximum Retail Price for 60 medicinal drugs
• National Medicinal Drugs Authority price controls make it tough: Drug importers
• Mystery deepens over missing files on NMRA cloud; service provider had no backup
‘Drug companies fear disastrous repercussions if trade secrets end up in wrong hands’
• Need to Develop Anti-viral drugs against Covid
• Use Osusala outlets to prevent private health mudalalis from fleecing the pandemic-hit public
• Sri Lanka airport starts pre-departure Rapid PCR tests with Asiri Hospitals
‘machines require cartridges to do the test which costs about 5,000 rupees’
• Govt. to import 360,000 more litres of liquid medicinal Oxygen
• President reinstates same director board of 1990 Suwaseriya
‘Dumindra Ratnayake, Chairman, Prof. Asitha de Silva, Vijaya Malalasekera and Sandya Salgado, plus ex-officio members from the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Finance and Police…The government has spent over Rs. 6 billion on the operation for the Suwaseriya Ambulance service since inception.’
• Ananda Kuruppuarachchi takes over Association of Private Hospitals & Nursing Homes
‘Chairman of Pannipitiya Private Hospital, Dr. Ananda Kuruppuarachchi took over from Hemas Hospitals’ Lakith Peiris. Vice Presidents – Indrani Fernando (New Philip Hospital), Ruwan Senatilleke (Asiri Hospitals) and Upali Banagala (Kings Hospital), Secretary – Sunil Ratnapreya (Asiri Hospital), Assistant Secretary – Karthika Kathiresan (Lanka Hospitals), Treasurer – Dinesh Ranaweera (Royal Hospital) and Assistant Treasurer – Raveen Wickremasinghe (Ruhunu Hospital)’
• Pharmaceutical firms rake in billions with COVID jabs
• Investing in global vaccine equity acknowledges our shared fate
• World Bank’s International Finance Corp & Hemas to boost access to healthcare services
‘Supported by L.E.K Consulting, a management consultancy… IFC is the largest multilateral investor in health care in developing countries, with investments in over 200 projects in the past two decades totaling US$ 6 billion.’
• Ceylon Electricity Revenues Rs.121.5 billion
• Sri Lanka online firewood sale on fire as price controls create LPG shortage
• Laugfs Gas revenues of Rs.9.6 billion in the three months to June,
‘Laugfs Holdings Limited has a 74.02 % stake, Employees’ Provident Fund holds a 17.28%…’
• Political undercurrents deal with Malaysian firm: CEB engineers tell President to order probe
• Norwegian Ambassador wants to invest in renewable energy
• Sri Lanka rules out new coal power, promotes rooftop solar
• Mining and trade license validity period extended: Amaraweera
• Illegal sand mining in Batticaloa: Youth injured when Army personnel opened fire
• Hambantota industrial park speeds ahead with new investments
‘we have a comparative advantage of having an industrial park linked to the port area, alongside favorable logistics and energy costs’
• Coal for steel and cement factory in the proposed Hambantota Economic Zone.
• Righting the Ship: X-Press Pearl Disaster & Imperative for Regional Maritime Cooperation
• Cabinet nod to import 164 vehicles for essential services
• State Engineering Corp got over Rs 1 bn for unfinished Inland Revenue building – COPA
• Present status of construction contractors and construction industry in SL 1&2
‘High employee turnover….. Shortage of skilled labour… CIDA, NBRO, UDA, RDA, Water Board, Education, Health, Irrigation, Land Reclamation Board, HDFC and National Procurement Commission are some of the entities with stakes in construction sector.;
• Hayleys purchases 27.5 million shares of Unisyst Engineering
• Information & Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) partners Startup Genome
• Polyester yarn demand in Sri Lanka is 10,000 tonnes.
• Dankotuwa Porcelain PLC collaborates with AOD for Novel Design Opportunities
• R.O.B. Wijesekera, Doyen of Natural Product Chemistry
• Pranic Energy Centre
• Vietnam strives to have homegrown vaccines next month
• China’s port shutdown raises fears of closures worldwide
• Investment or imperialism? One of the world’s largest gold mines could’ve transformed Kyrgyzstan. Instead, it enriched Canadians
• What Is the US Defense Production Act?
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., and the rule of moneylenders.
• No new Central Bank restrictions on cards, but some banks have
• Commercial Bank becomes biggest lender to SME sector in 2020
‘of Rs. 163.9 billion granted to the SME sector by Commercial Bank, 4.47% was to the agriculture sector, 14.58% to the services sector, 28% to the industry sector and 52.9% to ‘Other’ sector.’
• Banks increasing rates for overseas online payments ?
• Historically low interest rates boost 1H private sector borrowing from banks by Rs. 414 b
• Companies Mobilize Over LKR 75 Bn in First 7 Months of Year Through the Capital Market
‘State institutions such as Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) opting to finance their capital requirements through the Sri Lankan stock market,’
• Sri Lanka stocks fall after central bank’s hawkish policy stance
• Expolanka dislodges CTC, JKH as second most valuable
• Dhammika Perera enters Commercial Bank’s top 20 shareholder list
‘Aberdeen Standard Investment Holdings’ Asia Dragon Trust was the 16th largest shareholder. ComBank has reduced its exposure to Sri Lankan securities to 0.3% during the quarter, from 1% in the previous year. LF Ruffer Pacific and Emerging Markets Fund was 19th largest shareholder, didn’t appear…Southern Province-based Andaradeniya Estate (Pvt.) Ltd, controlled by Dr. W. Jinadasa,…
DFCC Bank is the single largest shareholder of Commercial Bank, followed by Indra Traders’ Y.S.H.I. Silva and the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF). The International Finance Corporation (IFC) held around 14.4% stake…Harry Jayawardena-controlled Melstacorp is the sixth largest shareholder…’
• Bank of Ceylon appoints Veteran Banker K.E.D Sumanasiri as its General Manager
• Extraordinary State support no longer factored in BOC, People’s Bank ratings: Fitch
• Sri Lanka’s First Capital Holdings Assets Rs. 45.6 billion rupees
• Hatton National Bank assets Rs.33.7 billion
• Sampath Bank 1H21 Rs.9.5billion
• Ban on Pan Asia Bank’s primary dealership extended
• Pan Asia Banking Corporation H1 pre-tax profit rose by 27% to Rs. 1,822 million
• Orient Finance Q12021-22 total assets LKR 15 Bn
• SANASA Movement celebrates Int’l Co-operative Day under founder Dr. P. A. Kiriwandeniya
• World Bank’s International Finance Corporation Ramps Up Investments in South Asia
‘Under the World Bank Group’s Climate Change Action Plan (2021-2025), IFC has committed to aligning all new real sector operations with the objectives of the Paris Agreement by 1 July 2025 and set the target of reaching 35% financing for climate on average over the next five years. In addition, IFC will intensify its effort to create bankable investment opportunities and to mobilise private financing towards decarbonising five key sectors as outlined in the CCAP.’
• BOV Capital’s Venture Engine hosted marquee investors from a number of international VCs. ‘Avendus Capital, Accel, Sequoia Capital, Aavishkaar, Khazanah, Temasek, Crescent Group, 500start-ups, Lightbox Ventures, Jungle Ventures, Waterbridge Ventures, Unicorn India Ventures, Omidyar Network, TVS Capital, Gulf Islamic Investments, Morph Ventures and Striders Capital. Heavyweights like Google, Microsoft and Uber, as well as Indian Angel Network and the Singapore Angel Network.
• Biden tapping insiders from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York for key financial posts
‘The Federal Reserve Board of Governors is an independent federal agency with members appointed by the US President. But the 12 regional Federal Reserve banks that are part of the Federal Reserve System are owned, outright, by commercial banks, thus making these Fed banks private entities.’
• 7 of the Obama campaign’s top 14 donors were convicted Wall Street firms
• U$ Treasury is Obsessed with Market Intelligence Gathering
• 2 US Congressmen Facilitated Today’s Derivatives Nightmare at Wall Street’s Mega Banks
C9. Business (Rentierism: money via imports, real-estate, tourism, insurance, fear, privatization)
ee Business aka ee Rentier focuses on diversions of the oligarchy, the domination by a merchant mafia, making money from unproductive land sales, tourism, insurance, advertising, etc. – the charade of press releases disguised as ‘news’
• Sri Lanka Chamber of the Pharmaceutical Industry 60th Annual General Meeting Virtual
‘Formerly Sri Lanka Pharmaceutical Traders Association (SLPTA), SLCPI President – Sanjiva Wijesekera (Executive Director – George Steuart Health), Immediate Past President – Kasthuri Chellaraja Wilson (CEO – Hemas Holdings), Senior Vice President – M Prathaban (Managing Director – Emerchemie NB Ceylon), Vice President – Azam Jaward (Managing Director – Cipla Pharma Lanka), Hon. Secretary – Shantha Bandara (CEO – Sunshine Healthcare Lanka) and Treasurer – Dinesh Athapaththu (Managing Director – Morison… over 60 members spanning manufacturers, importers, distributors and retailers, with over 80% of the private sector pharmaceutical industry, supplying patients with 800 molecules from 364 manufacturers from across the world’
• Access Engineering 1Q22 Total asset base Rs.59.70 billion & Rs.44.88 billion
‘Directors are Sumal Perera (Chairman), Christopher Joshua (Managing Director), Rohana Fernando (COO), Shevantha Mendis, Dharshana Munasinghe, Dilhan Perera, Shamal Perera, Ranjan Gomez, Malik Ranasinghe, Niroshan Gunaratne and Dinesh Weerakkody.’
• Ceylon Tobacco Co. 1H21 Rs.64.8 billion
‘British American Tobacco International Holdings BV and Philip Morris Brand SARL hold 84.13% and 8.32% stake each in Ceylon Tobacco Co.’
• Coca-Cola invested US$99 million in SL over 2 decades, creating thousands of jobs
• Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka June revenue Rs 21.7 billion rupees
‘Sri Lanka’s largest distiller, with 70% market share.. Sri Lanka has 2,800 liquor outlets for a population of 21 million, making the distance between two liquor outlets on average to 23.21 square kilometres, with the highest being the 80 square kilometre in more distant provinces’
• Hemas Pharma JuneQ revenue to 16.4 billion rupees
• LOLC Holdings profits 10.8 billion rupees in 1H2021
• Abans revenue of Rs. 10.6 Bn in Q1 FY22
• Lion Brewery 1Q sales of Rs.10.6 billion in the April-June quarter
‘Ceylon Beverage Holdings held a 52.25% stake in Lion Brewery while Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Berhard had a 25% stake, being the company’s second largest shareholder’
• Sri Lanka’s Aitken Spence Group revenue for JuneQ 8.5 billion rupees.
• 60% shareholder Lamurep Investments invests Rs.1b more to up stake in Sunshine Holdings
• Govt. allows import of gold for “genuine” export-oriented jewellery manufacturers
‘50% of the local gold demand was sourced through old, refined jewellery obtained from auctions conducted by pawn brokers…. gold imports peaked in 2017 to $ 650 million’
• BPPL’s consolidated revenue Q1 = Rs. 1 billion
• Scandinavian private equity company invests USD 20 million in Exporter 99x
‘Herkules Deal-by-Deal, a reputable private equity firm in Scandinavia’
• AIA profit rose by 22% to US $1.81 billion in the January-to-June period.
• USAID’s Sri Lanka@100 hosts webinar on transformational growth
‘Supported by Stax Inc., NDB Bank, SLASSCOM, AmCham, and CIMA Sri Lanka’
• Hayleys Fibre with Revenue of Rs.2 billion announces Rajeeve Goonetilleke as new MD
‘He worked at GlaxoSK, Shadowline and Fashionline Saigon, Vietnam, and was CEO, Brandix Solutions’
• Anil Tittawella to lead Janashakthi Insurance
‘He is also Chairman of Orient Finance, a Janashakthi Group Co. Directors are Anil Tittawella, Prakash Schaffter, Ravi Liyanage, Nathan Sivagananathan, Avindra Rodrigo, Deshal de Mel, Mahela Jayawardena, Warini De Costa, Dinesh Schaffter and Annika Senanayake.’
• Co-Operative Insurance revenue of Rs. 5.2 Bn announces upcoming IPO
‘The IPO will be managed by the Merchant Bank’
• Tushan and Minoli Wickramasinghe on building Capital Trust Holdings
‘It has evolved into the largest property brokering company in the country, entailing partnerships with three global brands – CBRE, Colliers and Knight Frank. Capital Trust Properties… Capital Trust Holdings has wholly-owned subsidiary companies predominantly in the financial sectors, such as eCapital Trust Credit, a licensed margin trading company, Capital Trust Wealth Management, a licensed Fund Management company and Capital Trust Global Markets, a platform to trade in 37 exchanges. We also have the largest flexible packaging manufacturing company in the country, ALFT Packaging and the leading English medium support education institute in Colombo – Shakthi Institute… There seems to be over Rs700 billion in fixed deposits providing negative real returns.’
• Faizal Salieh elected Sri Lanka Institute of Directors Chairman
‘Arosh Nanayakkara and Dinesh Weerakkody were elected as Senior Vice Chairperson and Vice Chairman. Prakash Schaffter, VishGovindasamy, Dilshan Rodrigo, Nadija Tambiah,.Aruni Rajakarier, Ravi Abeysuriya, Manohari Abeyesekera and CharakaPerera were elected to the Governing Council with Rasakanth Rasiah, the Immediate Past Chairman serving, in an ex-officio capacity.
• Harpo Gooneratne re-elected President, Colombo City Restaurant Collective
‘Vice President Dharshan Munidasa, Secretary Dinesh Wijesinghe, Assist Secretary Nadeem Rajabdeen, Treasurer Saurab Udeshi and Asst. Treasurer Viraj Panchal… along with committee members Vichalya Antonio Fernando, Hisham Cader, Apinash Sivagumaran, and Gerard Mendis’
• English & European Chamber of Commerce want to ‘Buy a Meal’
• Late 1950s foreign exchange crisis led to ban on import of racehorses
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.
• Mr President – Lead from the front!
‘The President was elected by the people – 69 lakhs of them!’
• Ten constituent parties of Sri Lanka ruling alliance & Monks call for lockdown
• SLFP pushes for mixed electoral system, backs executive presidential system with amendments
• Manipulation of Covid figures: SLPP ally provides ammunition to SJB
‘by a senior Army officer, holding the rank of Maj. Gen. and two specialists attached to the Epidemiology Unit’
• JVP tells people to ensure their own protection instead of waiting for lockdowns
• The Opposition’s road ahead, and a critique of the Radical Centre
• Process of Political Party Development in Sri Lanka; Where Are We? (Part 1&2)
• Presidential Covid task force is president, army commander and several Viyath Maga doctors
• Task forces and advisory cabals sideline cabinet ministers & administrative machineries
‘They have also isolated the President from the structure of government of which the President is the civilian head even as he is the commander in chief of the armed forces…’
• Catastrophic Kabul collapse, Colombo camouflage and Opposition oddity – Jayatilleka
‘Sajith’s SJB is a reformist yet systemic player which will alarm neither the world’s democracies nor the officer corps of the Sri Lankan armed forces’
• Justice Minister’s New Website of the Office of National Unity and Reconciliation
• E.M.V. Naganathan founding member of Ilankai Thamizh Arasu Katchi (ITAK, Federal Party)
• Detangling Sinophobia and criticism of the Chinese State
• The theory of decision-making
• Letter To Young Political Workers (1931) – Bhagat Singh
• Fidel Castro interviewed by Jas Gawronski (1993)
• The Attica Liberation Faction Manifesto of Demands and Anti-Depression Platform, 1971
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.
• Careless airing of Hindi films by television channels– Withanage
‘With the pandemic, more than eight cinema halls ceased operations permanently’
• Complex and contradictory: A literary survey of the Sinhala middle-class
• “An Unfinished Odyssey” Library – Ceylon Shipping Corporation
• Kohomba Kankariya, the sociology of a Kandyan ritual
• Rap song on underworld ordered removed: Arrested individuals granted bail
• Cinemas in Sri Lanka then and now
• WhatsApp shuts down Taliban helpline in Kabul
‘Number meant to act as emergency hotline for Afghan civilians to report violence and looting’
• Introduction to Dreamland (1931) – Bhagat Singh
‘Review of Poetry by Lala Ram Saran Das convicted for life in 1915 in first Lahore Conspiracy Case’
• Black literary and aesthetic production
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