‘Before you study the economics, study the economists!’
e-Con e-News 27 March – 02 April 2022
A US Naval Warfare College study recommends escalating energy policy to strangle nations:
‘Sharply rising commodity prices resulting from NATO’s expansion against Russia
have prompted comparisons with the 1973 oil crisis.
But this energy shock is different, and arguably more serious,
as it involves all of the world’s major sources of energy
– oil, natural gas, thermal, and coal – at the same time.
Together, these sources make up 83% of the world’s primary energy consumption…
Compulsory conservation and energy-demand reduction…
will ensure the sustainability and credibility of sanctions policies‘ (see ee Economics, Austerity)
They want more dead brown bodies. The USA, the English and the German-French-led EU, do. They don’t care who. They don’t care from which party Sri Lankan bodies come. And for what? These white governments are pushing through their increasingly fast-forward slow-motion ‘Color Revolution’ game here. Their old formula: ‘destabilization through public support for regime-change operations’. This ‘public’ is the people’s worst enemy. For they have no memory or vision.
A frothing-at-the-mouth media, spreading confusion and fear, are teleprompted by their multinational sponsors: major chemical (fuel, pharma, fertilizer, FMCG) importers. They are only fuelling up the demand for an elected President and government to flee. But who and what do the people wish instead? What the merchant-usurers wish is clear. They demand ‘Go to IMF’! They wish continued colonization.
The independence ‘received’ from England was always a bucket full of holes. Several attempts to truly protect the people (land reform, industrialization) were undermined. Thus, we’ve long been in thrall to the IMF and World Bank. The economy continues to be made dependent on highly industrialized US, English, EU, Indian & Japanese goods, and markets for our labor-intensive, largely raw, materials. A few fund managers in London, Frankfurt and New York are gaming Sri Lanka’s rupee. India is lending us ‘credits’ to buy more cars and 3wheelers, and buy more of their imported petrol. How long is all this supposed to last?
The present government tried to buy love from Colombo’s capitalist merchants: tax breaks, low interest rates, and now floating the exchange rate, devaluing the rupee. Their so-called import restrictions did not ban non-essential goods outright but favored large importers. These importers are led by the multinationals (Unilever, Proctor & Gamble, CIC, Baur, Ceylon Tobacco, Nestle, etc.) and their local merchants-usurers. These MNCs operate inside the country, but outside the system. Their steady infiltration of the state’s decision-making mechanisms is steadily weakening food, health and energy security.
Just like in 1970-75, those benefiting from policies meant to defend the country, will now go on to exponentially magnify the post-1977 disasters that led to terrorism and war. Any government that wishes to take over, will claim to love the people, but will have to fulfil the demands of the IMF to sack workers en masse, privatize national assets, preventing the Central Bank from creating development banks (by making it independent of democratic control), preventing industrialization. Only by explaining all these to people, can we overcome the devastation on the horizon.
So where are the snipers? US Political Undersecretary V Nuland, who enforces such ‘revolutions of color’ by this US playbook, made a rather publicly toned-down, in and out, quicky entrance and exit March 22-23. She came, she saw, and…and… ‘regime-change’ demonstrations have erupted!
Nuland after all has not been very happy: The world (particularly, India) is not openly joining the whites in their current crusade against Russia (see ee Focus, The Jaunts of GI Jane)
The US may also be afraid that Sri Lankans will one day learn we’re in a crisis that is US-Dollar-denominated. More and more people are asking, Why can’t Sri Lanka de-Dollarize? In fact, we may ask, why does Sri Lanka need US$s at all? (see ee Focus, DeDollarize).
Sri Lanka meanwhile gets most of its energy via Singapore. Singapore, on feeling the effects of rising prices in this century’s first decade, set about plans for energy security. Energy security is surely a major requirement for any modern nation. (see Focus, Singapore)
• What did Anagarika Dharmapala learn about Japan’s industrialization processes in the early 1900s? Anagarika’s biographers appear very shy to tell us why he could not implement such methods here. They’re more concerned about his sex and private life. Why was the Anagarika steered to visit Booker T Washington’s Tuskegee Institute & the Carlisle Indian [Residential] School? The English and their local ‘brown sahib’ allies drove the Anagarika away. And into which ‘reservation and ghetto’, does the US wish to steer us now? (Random Notes)
While saying ‘it is a courageous step by the SL Government to reach out to the IMF’, Nuland underscored that the US is ‘encouraging Provincial Council elections in Sri Lanka’. (see, ‘US encourages PC polls in SL, says move to reach out IMF courageous’, Daily Mirror, 24 March). Nuland ironically promised funds for ‘renewable energy’. She also commended the Foreign Minister & Justice Minister…’ For what exactly?
The US State Department’s Nuland has been suffocating Sri Lanka and Pakistan into line. Who’s Nuland trying to impress? Nuland nee Nudelman is trying to make amends for her role in the murder of a whiter US diplomat in Libya. She’s also a European Jewish settler, who has to work hard – may be not as hard as other so-called ‘ethnics’ and ‘of colors’ in the Americas – to prove undying loyalty to their Anglo-Saxon masters (ee Focus, Jaunts of GI Jane).
Nuland came, saw, issued threats and flung bananas at the monkeys. She was happy enough about Sri Lanka openly embracing the US-IMF, and demanding local elections. Spoken like a true US democrat! Always concerned about morality faraway. And just to show US power, since her March visit, powercuts, disinformation and vivid pus-vedilla demonstrations have been escalated. This is Nudelman’s Rottweiler style, we’re told.
Nuland, after all, ignited the NATO war in Ukraine, aimed at dismembering Russia. She personally authorized the hiring of Israeli contract killers as snipers to perpetrate the 2014 Maidan massacre. This led to the coup against an elected Ukraine President, who had also been apparently trying to juggle ‘east’ and ‘west’. But the ‘west’ is a jealous god…
Pakistan President Imran Khan is also experiencing a juggler’s turbulence, in the wake of Nuland’s alighting on Islamabad. Khan says a geyser of freshly printed US dollars is greasing ancient and modern hinges. And here? Nuland delivered diverse ultimatums demanding Sri Lanka’s subjection to US dictate. Or else.
The white media, here and elsewhere, now portrays a Sri Lanka groping in an artificial darkness. Just as another Sorosian ‘Revolution of Color’ is unreeling in slow motion before our eyes. Hundreds of NGOS, including parties, seeking fresh funding, are said to be rousing their troops, north and south. Perhaps Nuland’s snipers are on their way? To promote chaos to implement their Sinhala Maidan program here?
The US recently joined a United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Core Group of countries to criticize SL’s ‘human rights’ record, to impose economic submission, like pushing the controversial Yugadhanavi energy deal to grab a monopoly over energy supply. Nuland then visited the Colombo Port and kooch-koochied with ‘the business community & civil society.’ All dependent on US protection & funds.
Meanwhile, the Federation of National Organizations (FNO) queried whether the government had challenged the US’s categorization of Army Chief General Shavendra Silva, also Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), as a war criminal.
A1. Reader Comments –
• Carb Footprint & Roundabout Oil Imports • Amazing ee & its Discontents
A2. Quotes of the Week
• Tyson on Plans • Agatha Christie on Perfect Murder • Who’s Surveying Sri Lanka & Sea? • Colombo’s Old Shopping Mania • Don’t Repay Debt for 5 Years • Trincomalee Handed over to India • 2-dozen White Market Analysts Determine SL’s Economy? SJB Economic Plan Vague on Social Protection • Only Align with Those who Offer Hi-Tech Industrialization • US Threatens Pakistan’s Imran • US Words & Deeds • England’s P&O Sacks Workers hires Coolies • Monetary Policy Produces Nothing – Bank of England
A3. Random Notes –
IMF’s Rhee in Colombo made South Korea Central Bank Governor • IMF Infiltrates Every Ministry • IMF Should Account for Debt • IMF Will Do Striptease SL • S Koreans Demand SL Slaves • What did Anagarika Learn in Japan • Who Sent Anagarika to see Booker T & Indian Residential Schools? • USAID Interferes in SL Labor Laws • Undermining Defence Production Act? • SJB Sajith & Father P’s Economics • SJB Splits on Economics • India’s Strategies in Lanka • US Nuland’s & SL Peiris’ Private Acts & Public Smiles • Booker T, DuBois, Garvey, Robeson & Cuba
B. ee Focus
B1. De-Dollarizing Sri Lanka – Shiran Illanperuma
B2. The Jaunts of GI Jane – Nuland unfolds Color Revolution over Sri Lanka
B3. Singapore’s Energy Security & Planning
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: firstname.lastname@example.org
• ‘Carbon footprint? From West Asia, avoiding Sri Lanka, to Singapore, and back to Sri Lanka? Oil comes here in quite the roundabout way, no? How come the ecomaniacs ain’t complaining?’
• ‘A-ma-zing! There are a few who have asked me off-and-on to stop forwarding ee. I think they’re too upset to discover what ee makes them think about, but are too gripped by its style and depth of study to simply skip bits that disturb their worldview.’
A2. Quotes of the Week_
• ‘Everyone has a plan, until they get a punch in the mouth’ – Mike Tyson
• ‘It’s easy to get away with murder if nobody knows it’s murder’ – Agatha Christie
• ‘Data, mapping, monitoring and surveying Sri Lanka, her seas, and Sri Lankans – ee Security, Nano-Satellite
• ‘It is the hour of shopping. To those not familiar with the ritual of the Cinnamon Gardens housewives, the scene would strike one as a scene after 100 Days’ Siege. There are 2 big department stores on York Street – they were known as European shops but the controlling interest is now in the hands of Jaffna Tamils and Burghers, though the floor managers and managers are still white men, and the saleswomen are as a rule Eurasian, while the lesser salesmen and their assistants are Ceylonese and Malayalee.’ – J Vijayatunga, Isle of Lanka (1955)
• ‘We should ask for a period (say about 5 years) where we do not repay our debt to the creditors. This is to enable us to bring about the requisite changes of the policies that will result in sustainable development. During this period, we can ensure that our people obtain their essential needs and their suffering be minimized.’ –ee Economists, Ill Wind
• ‘The Government is losing control over the power supply, which is important to protect the sovereignty of the country. Basil (Rajapaksa) before the meeting with Indian PM Modi, 1000s of acres were given to the Adani firm for a solar-power project [in Sampur, at the mouth of Trincomalee]. Modi has said, if that was not given, not to come that way. Lands are to be given off to India in the Pooneryn and Kachchativu areas. There are 7 such instances of vesting lands. These have not been revealed in advance, but just placed on the tables of the ministers at the cabinet meeting.’ – ee Politics, JVP
• ‘Capital-account convertibility will leave economic policy in the typical ’emerging market’ hostage to the whims and fancies of 2 dozen or so 30-something country analysts in London, Frankfurt, and New York.’ – D Gunawardena, ee Economists
• ‘We have a plan on how to deal with the IMF, restructure our debt and how to get bridging finance so that the queues will go away, plus, strengthen the banking system, recapitalise banks and major reforms. It will be a difficult period for everyone, we will not lie to the public’ – SJB MP Eran Wickramaratne, ee Economists, Confidence
• ‘We need a country or countries who will buy goods/services from us. And not garments and tea and the likes. But value-added and technological products/services. If they are not willing to buy, they should provide technologies so that we could provide such products/services at international standards. The country and countries that provide us these should be our allies. We need to align ourselves decisively with those countries (our economy is too weak to have high ideologies such as ‘non-aligned’). If both sides of the geo-political divide are willing to provide that, we could remain non-aligned! This is easier said than done, and actually something we should have done years or decades ago. But it has to start now.’ – ee Economists, Lenders
• ‘I was and will always be for a strong independent foreign policy where my people comes first. Now we have a message from the US. I mean some foreign country. I have received a message. The kind of message we have received is not against the PM but it’s against a nation. They say we will forgive Pakistan if Imran Khan goes, but if it fails, Pakistan will have to suffer. It’s recorded. It was said if Imran Khan remains the PM, our relationship will deteriorate and you will have to suffer. No reason was stated. They are telling Pakistan as if we are their slaves. Here they have 3 stooges.’ – Imran Khan, ee Sovereignty,
• ‘If we talk about whose words diverge from deeds, then I do not even want to give a huge number of examples now when the US said one thing, and did something completely different.’ – Sergey Lavrov, Russia Foreign Minister
• ‘P&O’s finances are a matter for them alone’ – England’s transport minister Robert Courts on P&O’s summary sacking of 800 people (disguised as ‘redundancy’ even though they’re to be replaced by ‘less-costly’ workers from India) – ee Workers
• ‘Monetary policy will not increase the supply of semiconductor chips, it will not increase the amount of wind (no, really), and nor will it produce more HGV drivers’ – Andrew Bailey, Bank of England governor (ee Economists, Inflation
A3. Random Notes (‘Seeing Number in Chaos’)_ _
• ‘Gihin Ennung’ – ‘See you later?’ – The IMF’s Chanyong Rhee must speak Sinhala by now. Even if we haven’t still learned to speak Korean. Rhee came here for a few days recently as the US-Treasury’s IMF representative. He then went home, retired from the IMF, and was transmogrified into the governor of their central bank! Presto! Why did he come here to begin with?
This was after Rhee had ‘talked’ to the Sri Lankan President, and top public officials like certain ministers. There are photographs. Everyone has to smile. As the IMF representative, he obtained more information, or permission to justify their further intelligence-gathering, to control Sri Lanka’s economy. Who is ‘they’, you may ask? What does ‘control’ mean?
Home he flies to US-occupied Korea, to be immediately installed as its new Central Bank Governor. Wow! Our economists and thinktanks will say he’s a fine, independent man. They’ll moon over Korea’s Central Bank as ‘independent’. Independent of South Korea’s ruling oligarchs. Yet Rhee will do what the US-occupied Korean state demands he do. This is what really learning to understand ‘white’ is all about. It’s not what they say, but what they do. Rhee will not return. He is gihin, in gangsta gangnam style!
• Since the 1980s IMF agents, visible and invisible, stand over every chief accountant in every major Sri Lankan ministry, and in the Central Bank, Treasury, etc. So we are told, and if so, what have they been doing? An assassin would stand behind every emperor, who offered them temporary bodyguard protection. What will the IMF’s official and unofficial agents implanted like a monitoring chip in each sinew of the state now do? After 16 IMF ‘engagements’, can a stable marriage take place in such an unequal relationship? Can they give us an accounting of the amounts of moneys borrowed, particularly, how much was taken out as interest and other charges (pricing, IPR), what was done with that money (foreign machines, experts & services bought)?
• The IMF wishes to privatize or as they call it ‘liberalize’ Sri Lankan resources. Liberal is a fine word. They will strip rather than invest in what-they-call ‘state-owned-enterprises’ (SOEs). These used to be considered vital national resources, vital for our food and military security, which of course is strengthened by investing in modern industrial security. All independent nations have defence production acts. So what on earth can this defence production be, if the IMF has their way, and continues the old anti-industrialization regime? The IMF, prescribes the bitter medicine the US Treasury wishes others to imbibe. They will ‘deregulate’, and particularly further diminish labor laws, when protecting workers should be our most important goal.
The S Korean ambassador here meanwhile promises to import more Sri Lankan workers? Rather than support and nurture workers within the country, we export workers. Soon there will be more Sinhala outside than inside the country. Like Irish outside Ireland, like Jamaicans outside Jamaica, like Puerto-Ricans outside Puerto Rico. Will our workers in that colony in Korea be enriched (i.e., with modern machine-making skills to return whole in body and mind to advance the country)? There are of course many many skills to be learned from all of Korea, north and south. Or will they be exploited at jobs other Koreans refuse to do (jobs not yet augmented by machines)? Will they come home, mangled, physically and mentally?
• What did Anagarika Dharmapala learn about Japan’s society, especially Japan’s economic rise? After 50 years of ‘learning from the barbarians’, did the Japanese share what they had learned about advancing their industrialization processes by the early 1900s? Anagarika’s biographers appear very shy to tell us. They’re more concerned about his sex life, his other political & ‘culturalist’ pronouncements bereft of his larger national plan.
Why was he steered to visit Booker T Washington’s Tuskegee Institute and the Carlisle Indian [residential] School? Into which ‘reservation’ / ‘ghetto’, does the US wish to steer us now? (see below)
What lessons did the Anagarika learn about the needed way forward in Japan and how it could be applied here? What was his program? After all, that was the age of Lenin beginning the climb to the ‘commanding heights’ of an economy. The age of the Republican Sun Yat-sen, of Ataturk, of Marategui and Marti. That was the age of Morocco’s Abd El Krim, who Ho Chi Minh called ‘the precursor of the armed struggle for independence’. Some claim Dharmapala was an English agent like Mahatma Gandhi, implanted to divide. Yet the English killed his brother Edmund, and with ruling oligarchs like the Wijewardenas, who own media Wijeya Group, chased the Anagarika out of the country into India, where he found refuge. We know he was critical of Mahatma Gandhi’s handicraft business. So how was he thwarted in Sri Lanka?
• The US government’s USAID is heavily interfering with Sri Lanka’s labor laws. The Ceylon Federation of Labour accuses the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) of being engaged ‘to review’ such laws. The MoJ is being paid by USAID to exclude the Ministry of Labour ‘and relevant stakeholders’. The government is said to be ‘clandestinely’ getting the MoJ to ‘to set, what is euphemistically called, a conducive environment for investment, especially Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).’
Meanwhile the US World Bank, this week, was afraid that ‘import restrictions and price controls are at a risk of backfiring’. What restrictions? The World Bank should give us a detailed breakdown of these controls and the imports being ‘restricted’.
• The IMF and a shrieking choir of economists keep demanding the weakening of Sri Lanka’s defences. Every independent country has a defence production act. This involves the vital sectors, such as food security, energy security, military security: all underpinned by industrial security. These sectors, mainly governmental, but some private, are primarily answerable to the state. The IMF wishes us to sell off natural resources, and national resources such as the so-called state-owned enterprises (SOEs). The IMF says they are a ‘burden’ on the people. Yet who made them a burden? Instead of greater investment to make them more productive and efficient, they were deprived of funds. Skilled and dedicated workers were chased out of these enterprises, and incompetent political catchers of various parties were imposed. Important assets were stripped off and plundered by the private sector. The Central Bank, the Bank of Ceylon, the People’s Bank were prevented from investing in modern industry. This is how they were made a burden.
• Jayatilleke on S Prema Minus R Prema = SJB? Certain UNP MPs, who are now the SJB’s foremost or rather yappy-yappy critics of the state of the economy, were once dubbed the ‘footnote clique’ for sabotaging the report of the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) that probed the Central Bank bond scam. One of them tried to prematurely sink the People’s Bank last week on behalf of his financial backers. This clique are being exposed as attempting to hijack the Ranasinghe Premadasaist road, and foist any IMF austerity only on the impoverished:
• SJB Splits on Economics: ‘Economic fundamentalisms’ – The SJB leader’s development philosophy articulated in his hour-long ‘social democracy’ parliamentary oration of 22 Nov 2021 doesn’t seem to be shared by the SJB’s economic policy team, going by the set of 5 main policy reforms presented by one of them in the Daily FT’s sister paper recently.
The 16-paragraph article does not devote a single paragraph to agriculture, instead according it just a single sentence. That sentence contradicts the SJB leader’s pledge to the farmers to provide fertilizer at affordable (ie, subsidized) prices in response to the peasantry’s collective cry for the restoration of chemical fertilizer at subsidized rates. A recommendation in the policy reform article: ‘In agriculture, instead of providing fertiliser as a subsidy, let’s provide technology as a subsidy.’ Does this mean – which is to say, doesn’t it mean – that the fertilizer subsidy will NOT be restored? Which exactly is the SJB stand on this decisive matter? Will the SJB leader have to ‘walk back’ his promises to the farmers?
How many Sri Lankan soil scientists and agronomists will back this recommendation? Will technology instead of fertilizer restore and sustain the productivity of the soil?
The SJB expert’s alternative economic policy reforms as contained in this article has only a single bland, nebulous reference to the poor, obviously reflective of his priorities at a time when a large number of people have been plunged into poverty…
Sri Lankans last suffered greatly in their everyday economic life in the 1970s, due to a closed economy, an acute forex shortage and the OPEC oil price hike.
Instead of euthanising SOEs classifiable as non-beneficial as recommended in the 5-point-reforms, when statism was at its zenith, President Premadasa’s own prescription in April 1973 was on creating competition by eliminating monopolies: ‘We should evolve a scheme under which the public sector, the co-operative sector, the private sector and a combination of all these 3 sectors – a joint sector – could function in competition with each other. Such competition will bring the maximum benefit to the people who need not become slaves of either a public or private monopoly. The government should ensure through its legislative & planning processes that the people participate in all aspects of development without allowing monopolies – state or individual.’
Unilateral, market fundamentalist ‘shock therapy’ instead of a consultative, consensual, compromise – President Premadasa’s 3 Cs – on reform, would trigger labour unrest which could destabilize any economic recovery package.’ (see ee Economists, Indian Inroads)
• Here are official NGO versions about Anagarika Dharmapala’s US itinerary: ‘Carlisle Indian School was founded in 1879 under the US government by Lieutenant Richard H. Pratt. One of the early federally funded ‘off-reservation Indian boarding schools’, Carlisle Pratt’s motto was, ‘Kill the Indian, save the man’. Arriving students were shorn of their long hair, and their names changed. At Carlisle, Pratt established a quasi-military regime. He used corporal punishment on students who exhibited ‘Native behavior’. Carlisle became the model for 26 off-reservation US Bureau of Indian Affairs boarding schools in 15 states and territories, some run by churches. From 1879-18, more than 10,000 Native American children from 140 tribes attended Carlisle alone.
‘The Anagarika Dharmapala spoke on Buddhism at the 1893 World Conference on Religions in Chicago. He later met African-American ‘educator’ Booker T Washington, visited his Tuskegee Institute, and praised Booker T in this ‘lovely’ letter:
‘When I saw the Tuskegee Institute with its manifold branches under enlightened teachers I rejoiced that you have made all this glorious work a consummation within a generation; and I thought of the Viceroy in India who with the millions of children starving for education and bread that he should waste in skyrockets and tomfoolery and vain show to please a few loafing lords who came from England last January $6 million in 13 days! He is not worth to loose the latchet of your shoe.’
What exactly was Washington’s (formerly ‘enslaved’) ‘glorious work’. ‘Booker T’ insisted that the white man would never grant ‘equality’ to the Black man. And the Black man should not ask. Black people had to be ‘separate but equal‘. He trained people in low-level tech skills. [His Tuskegee was later used for deadly syphilis experiments!] We know little of why BTW battled with Harvard-educated WEB DuBois, who instead demanded political rights as well. Dubois wrote famous histories about the wars (so-called ‘Civil’ Wars), of the crucial part Black people played in the short-lived victories of Reconstruction, Deconstruction, lynching, etc. He believed in a ‘Talented Tenth’ of Black people who would lead them to the promised land. Yet he went on to meet China’s modern leader, Mao Zedong, who saw the power of peasants and workers. DuBois died in exile in Ghana. Dubois and Paul Robeson would then be erased out of US memory. In the 20th century we then dimly hear of Dubois’ battles with Marcus Garvey. Garvey’s message ‘Doing for Self’ and ‘Back-to-Africa’, had certain parts amplified by the now white-controlled Reggae music industry, the Rastafarian movement, and the Ahmaddiya-funded Black Nation of Islam. Some saw these movements as further white attempts to counter and isolate the Communist Left, and especially the example of the Cuban Revolution, who have attemptedto industrialize (especially in bio-tech etc) despite blockades. Cuba and African armies also defeated the white south African army in Cuito Carnevale, Angola. It is this Cuban model that bears the lineage of the true history of liberation in the Americas, we may learn from, not just fake Black Lives Matter, etc., sponsored by the same folk who are playing ‘regime-change’ games here.
• SL & India to implement several ‘strategically’ important projects (not mentioning Trinco’s Sampur, Colombo Port, etc.) – Sri Lanka and India have agreed to implement several strategically important projects including Hybrid Power Projects in 3 islands in Jaffna, Unique Digital Identity (SL-UDI) scheme & development of Fisheries Harbours in Sri Lanka… One of the most important projects are the hybrid power plants in Jaffna, which was initially awarded to MS/Sinosar–Etechwin Joint Venture in China, and now going to India… India’s partnership with Sri Lanka was rooted in the ‘Neighbourhood First’ approach and SAGAR (Security & Growth for All in the Region) doctrine…The 6 MoUs: • MoU to establish modern computer labs and smart boards with customised curriculum software in 200 schools in Galle district. • MoU to implement the SL-UDI program with the Government of India’s Grant Assistance. • MoU between the Sushma Swaraj Institute of Foreign Services, India, and the Bandaranaike International Diplomatic Training Institute. • MoU to provide Marine Rescue Coordinating Centre. • MoU to implement Hybrid Power Projects in 3 islands in Jaffna. • MoU to develop Fisheries Harbours in Sri Lanka. (timesonline.lk/news-online/Sri-Lanka-and-India-to-implement-several-strategically-important-projects/2-1137171)
• USA’s Nuland and SL’s Minister of Foreign Affairs GL Peiris issued a joint statement on March 23, following their 4th Session of the SL-US Partnership Dialogue. Sri Lanka ‘welcomed the impending’ arrival of a 3rd US Coastguard Cutter, a hand-me-down from the US Excess Defence Articles program. The US also announced their King Air program for maritime monitoring. Ongoing ‘bilateral defence & security sector cooperation’, includes US funds for humanitarian demining and disaster relief, joint military engagements, human rights training for SL officers, and exchange of visits, including by US ships and military officials. They ‘resolved to continue cooperation on maritime security and work together to ensure a safe maritime domain in the Indian Ocean, through the rules-based international order’. The US strategy promises ‘a free, open, and prosperous Indo-Pacific region, which promotes freedom of navigation and overflight.’
The US is the largest market for Sri Lanka’s import-burdened exports. The US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) increased loans for such small and medium enterprises, particularly women-owned businesses, and for the first business accelerator in Sri Lanka, specifically aimed at women entrepreneurs. Accelerating what business?
The US welcomed Sri Lanka’s goal to produce 70% of electricity from renewable energy by 2030, and to attain carbon neutrality by 2050, helping fund a 5-year $19million Sri Lanka Energy Program and support towards a floating solar plant.
The US acknowledged progress in efforts to reform the Prevention of Terrorism Act, the release of long-term PTA detainees, the justice reform agenda, and engagement with civil society representatives.
US Ambassador Julie Chung later called on President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat, and commended the assistance given by the government during Nuland’s visit. Nuland must have declined our more famous ‘guard-of-honor’ ceremony.
B. Special Focus_
B1. De-Dollarizing Sri Lanka – Shiran Illanperuma
The NATO-Russia conflict playing out in Ukraine has brought to the fore long-simmering international tensions. These include the role of the US Dollar as the global reserve currency, and the power of the US government to unilaterally exclude nations, which challenge its dominance, from international trade, by sanctions and bans from international payment systems like SWIFT.
US economist Michael Hudson likens recent US financial sanctions on Russia to ‘shooting themselves in their own foot’. They are in reality providing Russia – the 11th largest economy in the world and home to the largest natural gas reserves in the world – a powerful incentive to find alternative mediums of exchange and payments systems so as to conduct trade. In addition, US sanctions signal larger economies like China toward the growing need to diversify away from Dollar-denominated assets in order to manage economic and geopolitical risks.
Russia and China are the 2 major countries leading what is often tagged, ‘de-Dollarization’. In 2019 Russia halved the dollar-denominated share of their forex reserves, opting to expand Euro, Yuan and gold holdings, which together now comprise 90% of Russia’s reserves. Meanwhile, China has been reducing holdings of US treasury bonds since 2015, opting instead to lend to developing countries through the Belt & Road Initiative (BRI) and accelerate Eurasian economic integration. By 2021, IMF data showed that the US-Dollar share of global reserves had dropped to its lowest levels since 1995.
China today is the world’s largest importer and exporter, as well as a larger creditor than the IMF and World Bank. This makes the Chinese Yuan (or Renminbi, ‘people’s currency’) the most poised to take over as the world reserve currency in the next long business cycle. It remains to be seen whether Chinese policymakers wish to go down this path and risk ending up in the position of the US – which has a de-industrialized and financialized economy, causing high inequality and a trade deficit. It is perhaps more likely that a reserve currency based on a basket of currencies of major economies may be more beneficial for global stability and multipolarity.
PetroDollar at Risk: In 1971 the US unilaterally decided to abandon the gold standard and move to fiat currency in response to high inflation and their trade deficit. By 1974 the US struck a deal with OPEC to make the US Dollar the standard currency for global trade in oil. This gave rise to what is now known as the petrodollar, as global oil transactions helped prop up the value and stability of the US Dollar despite the USA’s own yawning trade deficit. This also gave the US power to print large amounts of its currency to prop up financial markets while outsourcing manufacturing.
However, this status quo, too, is on the verge of change. For over 6 years now, China and Saudi Arabia – the world’s 2nd-largest producer of crude oil – have discussed the possibility of conducting oil transactions in Yuan. This is less outlandish than it may first sound, as Saudi Arabia’s biggest trade partner is China, accounting for over 20% of imports and exports. In 2017 the central banks of Russia and China agreed to conduct crude-oil transactions in Yuan. Adding to this geopolitical shift is Russian President Putin’s recent ultimatum that ‘unfriendly countries’ pay Russia in Rubles for gas. This could have vast implications, as 41% of Europe’s gas requirement is imported from Russia. The Nordstream 2 pipeline (now cancelled) would have doubled Russian gas shipments to the EU.
To make matters even worse for the petrodollar, the world is also on the verge of an energy revolution that could drive the next business cycle. Usually, new business cycles bring with them a radical change in energy infrastructure. Global capitalism has shifted from steam to coal to oil, and the future appears to be a mix of dynamic renewable energy and stable nuclear energy. The current spike in fossil-fuel prices will only accelerate this shift, endangering the petrodollar even further.
Why SL can’t de-dollarize: Sri Lanka today is in a crisis that is dollar-denominated. As a former plantation economy, Sri Lanka specializes in the production of a handful of agricultural products. Deteriorating terms of trade in the 1950-60s are the origins of the country’s trade deficit, which in turn pushed us to load up on debt. While the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia-Ukraine conflict have certainly exacerbated the problem through losses in tourism revenue, and soaring prices of grain, energy and logistics, these external shocks have only revealed pre-existing weaknesses in Sri Lanka’s still woefully underdeveloped economy.
With de-dollarization gaining momentum, one could ask why Sri Lanka needs US Dollars at all. Indeed, Sri Lanka has strong diplomatic ties with the de-Dollarizing bloc. The former Soviet Union provided much of the hardware that set up Sri Lanka’s heavy industry in the 1950-60s. Iran provided Sri Lanka’s only crude oil refinery, in Sapugaskanda. China has financed and built much of Sri Lanka’s contemporary road, port and energy infrastructure. Sri Lanka’s biggest import origins are China and India. The problem lies, not in where Sri Lanka imports are from, but where it exports to.
Sri Lanka’s largest export markets are the US and the EU. This is partly because the country’s only significant manufacture – garments – was developed through the Multifiber Agreement, making it uncompetitive and dependent on Western buyers. This apparel industry, while being a major foreign-currency earner, also represents a geopolitical weakness for Sri Lanka, as it cannot maintain strategic autonomy without the threat of losing perks such as the GSP+ which keeps it locked into Western markets and the USDollar.
Sri Lanka’s exports to the likes of Russia and China are still predominantly agricultural products, such as tea and coconut. To diversify its reserve currency basket, Sri Lanka would have to first diversify its export manufactures, which in turn requires a progressive industrial policy to develop its domestic manufacturing. Sri Lanka must boost 2way trade within Eurasia, otherwise Sri Lanka risks not only strategic autonomy, but also losing an opportunity to be an innovative first mover in the quickly growing international de-Dollarization that’s likely in the next business cycle.
B2. The Jaunts of GI Jane – Nuland unfolds a ‘Color Revolution’ over Sri Lanka?
It is 2003 again, it is WMD & Invade-Everyone-Time again in Washington!
US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland has not been a very happy trooper. A glummy GI Jane. Russia appears to have outwitted the US in the East, and now she wishes to hit us over the head to ease her migraines.
A European Jewish settler in the Americas, Nuland nee Nudelman, is working overtime to convince her Anglo-Saxon handlers that she is as committed to Anglo-Saxon world domination as they are. To dismember Russia, she is even willing to hold hands with Nazis in her ancestral homeland, who chased out her grandpa.
After Russian Federation forces captured 30 US Pentagon-funded bio-WMD labs in the Ukraine on March 7, the US initially slammed such information as ‘fake’. Undersecretary Nuland then nervously blurted out the existence of US-funded ‘biological research facilities’ there. She even tried to claim it’s Russia about to launch a bio attack. This made critics recall the US false-flag operation in Syria, which blamed a chemical attack on Russia.
Nuland has also been working overtime to keep the USA’s European and settler poodle-nations in line. Israel did not impose sanctions against Russian money dealings, rankling the Biden administration. Nuland lashed out: ‘You (Israel) don’t want to become the last haven for dirty money that’s fuelling Putin’s wars.’
In mid-March Nuland travelled to Rome to warn Italian PM Matteo Renzi, after he met Putin, in the first official trip to Moscow by any major European leader since Russia took back the Crimea.
Peregrinating the Himalayas, US Undersecretary Nuland then warned Pakistan’s PM Imran Khan: Khan must submit or step down voluntarily, or the US will make the people of Pakistan suffer.
This US dystopia is also being played out in Sri Lanka. A popularly elected president must submit or step down. Otherwise, the US, England and the EU will unleash their funded perathayas on the country. Indeed, the government’s policies appear to have been sabotaged from day one by the international import mafia and the ‘permanent government’ – so-called civil and public officials. They appear fully compromised by white multinational corporations. The MNCs are the main importers (of chemicals, fuels, fertilizers) as well as exporters (of dollars & import-heavy manufactures). MNCs have stealthily escalated their attack on this popularly elected government, undermining any (even if mostly verbal) promises and attempts at a national economy. Multinationals have infiltrated the government’s decision-making structures.
On March 24 Nuland met Sri Lankan leaders. This was after her foreign-ministry-level consultations in Delhi, trailing after Japanese PM Fumio Kishida, and a virtual summit between PM Narendra Modi and Australian PM Morrison – all pushing India to support NATO’s sanctions against Russia.
So why is Nuland, with her East European Jewish origins, acting the rabid, barking and biting bulldog for the US’ ruling Anglo-Saxon cabal? The USA and its CIA, which runs the State Department, has an Anglo-Saxon core. Nuland has also to make amends for her role in the Benghazi debacle that killed the whiter-than-her US Ambassador Chris Stevens, and 3 other US mercenaries. Nuland was the Obama State Department’s spokeswoman during that Libya ‘scandal’. She crafted the talking points that US UN Ambassador Susan Rice used to falsely claim the attack was a spontaneous reaction to events in Cairo caused by an anti-Islam video. Nuland had erased CIA warnings about 5 other attacks against foreign interests in Benghazi in the months leading up to the attack.
Nuland, as US President Obama’s point-tool for Ukraine, was then sent down to Kyiv’s Maidan Square to personally supervise the ‘velvet revolution’ in 2013. She promised the Ukrainians: integration, Westernization, NATO-ization, all aimed at baiting the Kremlin. She then orchestrated the 2014 coup in the Ukraine.
Nuland next launched a campaign of terror against Russian-speaking Donbas, which has a third of Ukraine’s population. CIA director John Brennan in Kyiv ran ‘special security units’, which coordinated savage attacks on people in Donbas, who opposed the coup. Bussed-in fascist thugs burnt the trade-union headquarters in the city of Odessa, murdering 41 people trapped inside. Obama then congratulated the ‘duly elected’ coup regime for its ‘remarkable restraint’…
In between Obama and Biden during the Trump years, Nuland retreated to a thinktank at Brookings, where her warmongering husband Robert Kagan was a fellow. After Trump’s election, Carl Gershman, then head of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), and Freedom House boss Michael J Abramowitz promoted meetings on both sides of the Atlantic, to push the line that the Kremlin installed Trump, with Russia becoming the US’ main threat. The internal threat was Trump and his allies, as well as ‘the rapid rise of digital communication, [which] has posed unique challenges for democracy, including the viral spread of fake news’. One of Google’s main political men, ex-Bush official Scott Carpenter, was ‘ubiquitous at these gatherings’. The Big Tech censorship regime has since gagged everyone from congressional critics of mandatory masking to a former commander-in-chief of the US, Trump. Nuland is now Biden’s Ukraine point-tool. In response to the NATO war in the Ukraine, the coalition organized by Gershman, et al, published a statement urging outsiders to ‘trust only official sources/Ukrainian institutions’ (national army, president, Ministry of Foreign Affairs etc).
Javelins, NLAWs, and other ‘defensive’ arms are now flooding Ukraine, sent by the Pentagon, as well as by ‘good liberals and social democrats’ in Brussels, Berlin, Paris, Stockholm, Lisbon, Madrid, and elsewhere. War-mongering hawks dominate TV news and major editorial pages on both sides of the Atlantic, and their propaganda multiplies online, aided by Silicon Valley friends.
A NATO ‘no-fly zone’ over Ukraine could lead to a major confrontation with nuclear Russia. Yet the ‘liberal’ Guardian publishes claims, a NFZ ‘shouldn’t be off the table’. ‘Broad majorities in the West favor a perilously escalatory response to Vladimir Putin’s misbegotten invasion’.
‘…war fever manifests in sordid expressions of Russophobia: attacks against Russian businesses, the effective ‘cancellation’ of Russia’s literary and philosophical masters, the firing of Russian artists from Western orchestras and operas. Anyone who dares question the prudence of escalation, or the wisdom and justice of US and NATO policy toward Moscow, faces the usual censure and censorship so characteristic of the ‘open society’. It is springtime again for the ‘democracy’ export industry: for their governmental operatives (Undersecretary of State Nuland, ex-Ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul), institutions (NED, Freedom House), and pet theorists (Bernard-Henri Lévy, [Nuland’s husband] Robert Kagan, Francis Fukuyama, Larry Diamond). As for media organs, the hawks’ takeover of mainstream, left-of-center outlets is so thorough as to render the old neoconservative bastions almost superfluous.’
‘Few of the politicians and pundits who promoted the regime-change wars [killing & maiming millions] paid a serious price. Fukuyama published a book-length reassessment in 2007. But penitent hawks were the exception, unreconstructed ones the norm. Even Fukuyama has now re-emerged as something of a hardline liberal enforcer, overseeing a blog dedicated to fending off challenges to Democracy, Inc.’ (see ee Sovereignty, Liberal Hawks)
• Nuland, like other ruling white settlers, has imbibed ‘Indian Wars’ into their genes, adept at fanning ‘primordial’ and ‘tribal’ historical hatreds’ for political and economic goals. Nuland claims to be driven to avenge a grandfather who had fled anti-Jewish pogroms in Bessarabia. A grandfather only described as a tailor, whose bitterness drove her own father insane, when she was 9. Nuland exhibits similar symptoms.
Nuland recalls ‘first female US Secretary of State, Madeline Albright’, who last week joined the half-million Iraqi children she’d said needed to be murdered to fulfil US foreign policy. Albright’s killer policies included NATO expansion and Yugoslavia’s dismemberment. Albright’s identity as a settler-woman-turned-war-hawk makes her a more than ideal example of the successes of ‘diversity’. Albright died during her chairing of the National Democratic Institute (NDI), funded by the National Endowment for Democracy and the US State Department. The NDI implements US President Jimmy Carter’s former national-security advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski’s legacy of destabilization through public support for ‘regime-change operations’, once seen as the CIA’s dirty work. It is this NED playbook that has been unfolding in Sri Lanka…
B3. Singapore’s Energy Security & Planning
‘Singapore, which is largely dependent on global trade and exports, was one of the countries feeling the effects of rising prices in the mid- to late-2000s. The-then Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore remarked in 2006:
‘Even as our consumption of energy has risen steadily with our rapidly growing economies, we have concurrently taken for granted that the supply of energy will continue to be cheap and sustainable. Recently, however, this idyllic state of affairs has been disrupted’
He announced that the government would look at energy issues from the perspectives of economic competitiveness, energy security, environmental sustainability and energy industry development. These 4 categories later took on a more definite shape when it was packaged as the National Energy Policy Report (NEPR). The government thus continued to mark out energy security as a primary driver of the national economy; its strategy had however shifted, from industrialization to economic growth.
NEPR: Energy for Growth – The Energy Policy Group released the NEPR-themed ‘Energy for Growth’ in November 2007. Formed in March 2006, the Energy Policy Group is an inter-ministerial group led by the Ministry of Trade & Industry (MTI). The group includes representatives from the Energy Market Authority (EMA) as well as the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of the Environment & Water Resources, Ministry of Transport, the Agency for Science, Technology & Research; the Building & Construction Authority, the Economic Development Board, the Land Transport Authority, and the National Environment Agency.
The report articulates the state’s holistic approach towards energy security. It outlines 3 main policy objectives: economic competitiveness, energy security, environmental sustainability. These 3 objectives translate into 6 strategies: to promote competitive markets; to diversify energy supplies; to improve energy efficiency; to build the energy industry, and invest in energy research and development; to step up international cooperation; and to develop a whole-of-government approach.
These objectives are to be achieved by developing and strengthening government, academic and research institutions. To that end, the government introduced several agencies with specific functions aligned to the state’s strategic objectives. These agencies regulate the industry and the market according to the policies set by the state. These policies and regulations in turn ensure that the energy market remains competitive and efficient. Complementing these government agencies are academic and research institutions that focus on studying energy-related issues. The impacts of the s6 strategies are perhaps better understood when examined against the backdrop of their implications for Singapore at the national, regional and international level.’
(The Non-traditional Security Perspective on Energy Security Policies in Singapore, Youngho Chang & Nur Azha Putra)
C. News Index______________________________________________
• ee News Index provides headlines & links to make sense of the weekly focus of published English ‘business news’ to expose the backwardness of multinational, corporate 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 (machine-making) industrialization fueled by a producer culture.
• Psycho-bio: US State Department Victoria Nuland as Leading War Monger in Ukraine
• Dozens arrested in Sri Lanka amid protests over worsening economy
‘Alan Keenan (formerly of US Human Rights Watch), a senior consultant at International Crisis Group, said Thursday’s protest outside Rajapaksa’s house “was an unprecedented show of anger and defiance” against the president’
• Economic crisis, political turmoil present a fresh opportunity for US-backed TNA
‘TNA’s real interest is nothing but the formation of North-East Development Fund’
• Erasing The Eelam Victory Part 16F Parts 1, 2 & 3, 16H Part 1
‘LTTE was a separatist movement poised to take over the north and east…’
• President-Nuland meeting: FNO asks if govt. took up issue of US vilifying Army Chief
• Becoming an Indian State while watching TV and Uproar – Nalin de Silva
• SL and Indian Navies held Bilateral Naval exercise
• Sri Lanka and India to implement several strategically important projects
• India foreign minister meets Sri Lanka finance minister, visits LIOC filling station
• India’s smaller neighbours have this subconscious resentment towards India
• Punchihewa’s new book on King Vijayabahu, the redeemer of Lanka
• Asgiriya Chapter Mahanayake concerned at agreements signed with foreign countries
• Sri Lanka’s Development marred by Foreign Interventions & Incursions
‘Sri Lanka gained partial independence in 1948 since the Queen/King remained Head of State and the highest court was the UK Privy Council. This meant that from 1948 to 1972 UK continued to have the final say in all of Sri Lanka’s affairs. Sri Lanka became truly independent only on 22 May 1972…’
• Why Indian troops should never return to Sri Lanka
• Indian agreements signed without prior Cabinet approval?
• Cabinet approves maritime security pact with India to secure Indian loan
‘The MRCC will be at the Naval Headquarters in Colombo, the Maritime Rescue Sub Centre (MRSC) will be at Hambantota, and the Sub-Units at Galle, Arugambay, Batticaloa, Trincomalee, Kallarawa, Point Pedro and Mullikulam. “Why must they be in the Navy headquarters…’
• India pushes Maritime Rescue Coordination Center (MRCC) on Sri Lanka
‘SL waters are a hub of activity…close to one of the world’s busiest East-West shipping lanes, this littoral state oversees marine traffic of >2000 ships daily and hosts >5000 sea-going multi-day trawlers’
• India suggests discontinuation SLN, CG deployment, wants creation of ‘paramilitary’ force to arrest poaching fishers
• Defence Ministry shields recent maritime security pacts with India from media criticism
• With Love from New Delhi! – Austin Fernando
‘China imports over half of its oil, transiting an estimated 70-85% of its imported oil supply through the Malacca Straits from oil-rich nations via the Indian Ocean shipping lanes. President Hu referred to this situation as ‘the Malacca Dilemma!’ No wonder India, probably with the knowledge of the US, has taken this Malacca Dilemma into consideration, and is acting accordingly.’
• SL Navy detains Indian trawler for poaching in Sea of Sri Lanka
• Stock of smuggled Indian dried turmeric, cardamom and herbicide seized
• India working overtime to ensure swift assistance to Sri Lanka – Jaishankar
• India’s NIA files charge sheet against 6 accused in LTTE terror funding case
• India throws its weight behind fresh Govt-TNA dialogue
• Tamil Genocide / Mullivaikal Remembrance in Auckland
• Geneva War Crimes Allegations – Government Ought To Change Strategy
• Alleged War crimes: Lord Naseby: English dispatches clear Sri Lanka of five major accusations
• FM questions whether England pursuing anti-Sri Lanka agenda for political reasons ‘
• No-confidence motion in Pakistan to remove PM Khan over mismanaged economy
• Imran Khan News: PM Refuses to Resign; Alleges 3 Stooges in Pak With Foreign Powers
• China’s diplomacy on a roll in Kabul
• More hunger in Afghanistan as donors fall short of $4.4 billion aid target
• Singapore is an anchor for the US presence in the region
• Russian Foreign Minister to visit Delhi this week amid Ukraine war
• Resignation of 2 English judges won’t affect HK’s judicial independence
• Wang meets Lavrov in China, hails ties as withstanding test of changing intl situation
• Petrodollar and US hegemony Putin-NATO-Zelenskyy Catastrophe
• Ukraine – Smoke And Mirrors Around Poisonous Peace Talks
• Evidence that US imperialists “predicted” Russia’s invasion of Ukraine before it happened
• The US, Russia and Ukraine: Thinking Beyond the New Cold War and World War 3
• Ukraine SitRep – Part II Of Russia’s Military Operation Unfolds
• US, Philippines hold largest joint military drills in years ‘with different goals’
• Washington should not dump ‘Cold War garbage’ in the Pacific Ocean: Global Times editorial
• ‘Bully’ Australia coerces Pacific island countries, smears China’s role in the region
• ‘Toothless’ Russia Sanctions Force US to Approach Sanctioned Iran, Venezuela
• US resets the containment of Iran
• Gun attacks kill 5 near Tel Aviv as officials condemn violence
• Ethiopian government and Tigrayan forces reach humanitarian truce
• U.S. Army general: Iran undermines Washington’s sanctions by supporting Venezuela & Cuba
• Elections in Haiti: Legitimizing Imperialism and Killing Democracy?
• Haiti: A Grassroots Analysis of Affairs Since Assassination of de facto President Jovenel Moïse
• Attempt to oust Peruvian president fails in congress
• Nicaragua rejects UN resolution on human rights situation
• Divided World: The UN Condemnation of Russia is Endorsed by Countries Run by the Richest, Oldest, Whitest People on Earth But Only 41% of the World’s Population
• US Liberal hawks are flying high once more, talons extended for the hunt.
• Boris Johnson wants to send deadlier weapons to help Ukraine
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.
• India pledges USD 1 Mn for BIMSTEC secretariat to increase operational budget
• Signing ceremony of three legal instruments during the BIMSTEC Summit
• Gazette preventing unvaccinated people from entering public places: SC dismisses petitions
• Former SL envoy to USA pleads guilty to defrauding Govt., attempted to embezzle $332,027
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 a modern industrial country.
• The Ranil-Basil Company started work a year ago – Nalin de Silva
• LTTE Diaspora & Sri Lanka’s Economy & Balkanizing India – Waduge
• Sri Lanka in Crisis Borne of an Ill Wind
• Continue the restrictions imposed on all non-essential imports
• Bond investors expect sharp rise in interest rates from April 6 monetary policy meeting
• Import restrictions and price controls are at a risk of backfiring – World Bank
• Technical committee and legal firm to negotiate with the International Monetary Fund
‘headed by Professor GL Pieris , minister of justice, PC Ali Sabry and assisted by Central Bank Governor and Treasury Secretary’
• Tissa Vitarana opposes going to IMF at All Party confab
• Sri Lanka had never achieved an industrial sector dominance in the GDP
• Lenders, rating agencies take comfort and confidence in IMF involvement
• Sri Lanka suffers long power cuts, lacks foreign currency to import fuel – Reuters
• Sri Lanka runs out of diesel, faces longest-ever blackout – The Hindu
• Economic collapse and the post-IMF crisis – Gunawardena & Kadirgamar
• Indian inroads, GR-TNA talks and errors of SJB political economy
• Chamber welcomes IMF support; looks for early appointment of financial and legal advisors
• Sri Lanka in economic crisis after policies made on cooked-up issues, anti-science: Eran
• SJB wants Monetary Board Members of Central Bank removed so board could be depoliticised
• SJB warns of crisis of confidence
• The new economic policies and expectations of the President – Sanderatne
‘This year’s balance of trade deficit is projected to be US$10 billion. This is larger than last year’s trade deficit of US$8.1 billion. This is due to an increase in imports owing to higher international prices of our main imports, as well as higher food imports, due to a shortfall in domestic food production.’
• Highest inflation in Asia! – Abeyratne
‘the “way out” requires severe austerity measures – harsh policy measures to reduce public spending, increase taxes and curtail money growth’
• Economic crisis; beyond politicians now
• IMF prescribes tax hikes, cuts in government spending
• IMF hints at necessity for debt restructuring programme
• IMF will build investor confidence but technical assistance alone isn’t enough – Wijewardena
• Economic crisis – then and now – Wijewardena
• Sri Lanka currency board will preserve rupee, impose discipline: Wijewardena
• IMF technical assistance alone isn’t enough – Theagarajah
• 1970s efforts to be self-sufficient too didn’t work
• IMF releases staff report on Sri Lanka; calls for strengthening VAT and income taxes
• Sri Lanka Is Facing ‘Clear Solvency Problem’: IMF Report
• Govt decides to hold parliament debate on IMF report
• Sri Lanka concedes making moves to engage IMF in a continued close dialogue
• Cabinets approves to table IMF report in Parliament
• IMF frowns on Colombo non-compliance with global minimum tax when drafting Port City law
• IMF forecasts robust private credit growth to persist through 2022
• Talks of IMF rescue package spark debate over stability and growth
• Sri Lankan finance minister to visit Washington next month for talks with IMF officials
• Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) asks Sri Lanka to consult IMF – Kohona
• What’s behind Sri Lanka’s economic crisis?
• Sri Lanka has to work fast to contain multiple defaults as Tanzi bites: Bellwether
‘foreign exchange shortages come primarily from its central bank which is operating an unworkable intermediate regime peg called a ‘flexible exchange rate’, which is neither a clean float nor a hard peg’
• The Urgent Case for Energy Austerity
‘if the West is serious about crippling Putin’s war machine, it must finally untie its energy bonds with Russia…’
• President of Argentina welcomes IMF agreement
• US-EU first High-Level Dialogue on Russia looks at further sanctions against Moscow
• The war on inflation – Roberts
‘There is an alternative to monetary policy. It is to boost investment and production through public investment. That would solve the supply shock. But sufficient public investment to do that would require significant control of the major sectors of the economy, particularly energy and agriculture; and coordinated action globally. That is currently a pipedream. Instead, governments are looking to cut back investment in productive sectors and boost military spending to fight the war against Russia (and China next)’
• The end of dollar dominance? – Roberts
• Historical Development of Capitalism /w Steve Maher
‘Historical Development of Capitalism – from the early 20th century, to the present: Post WWII, Marshall Plan, Bretton Woods, Post-War Boom, Nixon Shock, Stagflation, Class Discipline, Globalization, Volcker Schock… all leading up to the present Neoliberal stage of Capitalism. What are the features of neoliberalism? Is Neoliberalism over? Where does financialization fit in modern capitalism? Is capitalism in decline?’
• Europe Must Learn To Cheat On Its Sanctions (Just Like The US Is Doing It)
‘Chinese analysts warned that China-EU relations cannot be kidnapped by the Ukraine crisis, and Europe should no longer be abducted by the US in foreign policy’
C4. Economy (Usually reported in monetary terms)
ee Economy section shows how media usually measures economy by false indices like GDP, etc., in monetary terms, confusing money and capital, constantly calling for privatization, deregulation, moaning about debt & balance of payments, without stating the need for modern industrial production.
• National Chamber of Exporters: People Have No Option but to Fight
• Colombo inflation jumps to 18.7% in March reflecting impact of rupee float
• SL’s true inflation hits 55% in March defying official figures
• Sri Lanka imports up 23-pct in January as tourism recovers
• Sri Lanka banking sector under pressure
‘rupee devaluation has exerted pressure on the banks.. private banks are currently holding vast sums of dollar loans, while state banks are carrying a large foreign debt of several state-owned enterprises’
• Banking sector remains sound with comfortable capital and liquidity
• US$1Bn loan from China to settle previous loans
• Colombo asks Beijing for another 2.5 billion in loans
• Sri Lanka seeking another US$250 Mn swap from Bangladesh
• Indian credit line: Sri Lanka’s SPC calls tenders from Indian medical suppliers
• Shippers don’t accept pay in Indian Rs. for imported food containers under Indian credit line
• Indian credit-line to set up 14,000 home shops favouring SLPP supporters
‘essential commodities purchased from India with the credit-line are to be distributed among home shops in villages & shop owners will repay value of goods after selling while keeping profit margin.’
• IMF to start talks with Sri Lanka on loan request in coming days
• Sri Lanka 3-month bill yield up 72bp
• Sri Lanka rejects all bonds at auction amid rupee fall
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
• Ceylon Federation of Labour urges government to abandon USAID inspired labour reforms
“Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has been engaged to review labour laws with the assistance of USAID, sans involvement of the Ministry of Labour and relevant stakeholders.”
• 600,000 government servants threaten to withdraw from duties
• Politicians, PUCSL disregarded proposals – CEB Engineers
• Nurses’ Union protests opposite Health Ministry
• Midwives protest outside Health Ministry
• State Veterinary Surgeons demand arrest of those who assaulted colleague
• Rs. 5000 allowance for low income families seen as potentially destabilizing by stock market
• South Asia Textiles on par with global employee safety and environmental sustainability
‘South Asia Textiles, subsidiary of Hayleys Fabric, specialises in knitting, dyeing, finishing, printing, bushing, and sueding pre-shrunk fabric for Victoria Secret, Next, Marks & Spencer, Tesco, Calvin Klein, Decathlon and Adidas, etc.’
• One out of three pregnancies in Sri Lanka unintended – UNFPA
• Remedies for the Plight of School Leavers
• Continuing waste of educational plant
• Where Arts Faculties should be headed – a rejoinder
• German Karlsruhe Institute of Technology Students visit Hambantota International Port
• German support for SL SMEs to build capacity in renewable energy
• Unilever Sunlight launches initiative to uplift SMEs through ‘Manudam Viyamana’
‘Chief Guest, Namal Rajapaksa – Minister of Youth and Sports & State Minister of Digital Technology and Enterprise Development’
• Millions in India demand labor rights and better pay
• Sacked P&O workers replaced by Indian seafarers to be paid as little as £1.81 an hour
‘Glasgow-based firm Clyde Marine Recruitment are also hiring workers to cover the mass sacking of P&O Ferries staff. P&O Ferries told staff on Thursday they were losing their jobs in a pre-recorded video, with CEO Peter Hebblethwaite saying the sackings aimed to cut crewing costs by half’
• P&O and the Tory Road to Serfdom
• UN uncovers migrant abuse and possible mass graves in Libya
• Cuba Needs to Unleash Creative Energy of the Workers
• Tens of Thousands Threatened with Property Tax Foreclosures in Detroit
• An Act for the Abolition of Slavery [and for Compensating White Slaveowners], 1833
• Black Power: A Basic Understanding (1968) – Walter Rodney
‘The black people of whom I speak, therefore, are non-whites — the hundreds of millions of people whose homelands are in Asia and Africa, with another few millions in the Americas’
• Flores’ lawsuit against the NFL for discriminatory hiring practices
• Canadian Indigenous groups seek apology from Pope over abuse of children
• Why US Culture of Colonial Extraction is Making People Sick, Destroying Planet
C6. Agriculture (Robbery of rural home market; Machines, if used, mainly imported)
ee Agriculture emphasizes the failure to industrialize an agriculture that keeps the cultivator impoverished under moneylender and merchant, and the need to develop the rural home market, monetization and commercialization, to produce, rather than import, agricultural machinery.
• Food security in BIMSTEC region: Lessons from Sri Lanka’s smart farming
• Restore over 30,000 ancient tanks or wewas built by kings of old to provide water to farmers ‘During, dry season, they could be used for agricultural purposes and hydro reservoirs could be could be reserved for generating electricity’
• Dire shortage of water looms as levels drop drastically in hydropower reservoirs
• Fuel Crisis affecting water supply; NWSDB urges to use water sparingly
• Cloud seeding not only increases rainfall, but also increases agricultural crops
• Sri Lanka asks for food aid; China has offered 2,000 metric tonnes of rice free
• Yala season to receive home-grown fertilisers
• Dairy industry and price of milk – Sugath Kulatunga
• Happy Seafood Exporters Association of Sri Lanka
• Sri Lanka’s Dehiwala zoo director general Shermila Rajapaksa replaced
• Latin America and the Caribbean promote food sovereignty at FAO meeting
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 domination by merchants and moneylenders.
• MRP on the 60 essential drugs remain unchanged
• Shortage of medicines hits hospitals; scheduled surgeries at Peradeniya Hospital suspended
• Peradeniya Hospital resumes surgeries after MSD assures stocks
• Suspension of surgeries at Peradeniya Hospital: Indian Minister Jaishankar ready to intervene
• Prices of multiple medical devices revised
• Shortages force Sri Lanka hospital to halt routine surgeries; India offers help
• Sri Lanka’s economic crisis affects health sector
• CEB Engineers oppose handover of 2 renewable energy projects to India’s Adani Group evading tender procedure
• Lanka IOC: Ceaselessly depreciating LKR & Russia-Ukraine war behind gasoline price hike’
‘“Being the only public limited energy company and accountable to its more than 10,500 local shareholders, Lanka IOC has always remained committed…’
• Sri Lanka CPC racks up Rs250bn plus loss in three weeks as rupee falls
• Sri Lanka energy minister blames fuel shortages on past decisions
• CPC confirms govt. has to pay demurrage on diesel shipments
• CPC announces two day-diesel shortage
• Sri Lanka could face longer power cuts, bus operators may withdraw as fuel shortages bite
• Sri Lanka electricity demand soars despite power cuts as price hike delayed’
• Islands in Peril: Energy Projects moved from China to India, but why?
• Sapugaskanda power station in mint condition sold for scrap in the middle of power crisis?
• Pavithra points to past for power paralysis
• Rs. 6 bn needed to import 4 coal shipments
• PUCSL files FR case in Supreme Court for action against electricity shortage culprits
• Power crisis could grind on with govt.’s fixation on renewable energy
• USAID to provide credit facilities for Renewable Energy Projects in SL
• WCAworld suspends Gold Medallion Protection to its member freight forwarders in Sri Lanka
‘With over 10,431 member offices in 191 countries around the world, WCAworld is the world’s largest and the most influential network of independent freight forwarders’
• US EXIM Bank $48 million loan guarantee to sell 12 U.S.-made Wabtec Corp (WAB.N) locomotives to Sri Lanka Railways.
• Sri Lanka’s second nano-satellite deployed to orbit
‘Kitsune was designed by Kyutech (nodal partner) and four other partners, namely, Nanyang University, Singapore, Addnics Corporation, Japan, Harada Seiki Corporatin, Japan and the ACCIMT.’
• Highways Ministry speeding ahead with controversial bid to local consortium
• Cement prices up again
• SLIBTEC collaborates with USAID to establish SL’s first ‘Biotechnology Innovation Park’
• Apparel industry sounds alarm bells over on-going crisis as day-to-day operations take hit
• Bisphenol A and Bisphenol S in thermal paper and erasers
• China-funded largest sewage plant in South Asia begins operations
• Vaccine company’s ties to big tobacco can still be considered, says WHO
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, preventing investment in modern production.
• Conrad appointed Chairman, Krishan CEO following Commercial Leasing & Finance (CLC)’s amalgamation with LOFC
‘Krishan Thilakaratne … is on board of Seylan Bank, Commercial Insurance Brokers, LOLC Myanmar Micro Finance Co., LOLC Central Asia, Credit Information Bureau of Sri Lanka (CRIB), Prasac Micro Finance Institution Cambodia and past Chairman of the Finance Houses Association of Sri Lanka (FHASL), the Apex body for Non-Bank Financial Institutions (NBFIs). The other board members of LOFC are: K.U. Amarasinghe, B.C.G. de Zylva, P.A. Wijeratne and K.Sundararaj.’
• Money Changers warned of license suspension : CBSL
• Central Bank suspends Prasanna Money Exchange permit for offering higher rates
• Constituent change in the US S&P Sri Lanka 20 Index
• Sri Lanka rupee quoted at 285/310 to US dollar
• Stock market tumbles further; Rs. 578 b in value wiped off in 3 days
• Locals give fresh jolt to CSE, foreigners remain bullish
• Economic woes, power cuts drag Sri Lanka shares to over 6-month low
• Sri Lanka stock trading halted as market plunges 5.0-pct
• CSE’s loss of value over three days snowballs to Rs. 570 billion
• Sri Lanka stock trading halted after 5-pct drop
• Shares post worst week ever amid power crisis
• U.S. Banks’ Role in Financing “the Horrors of Slavery”
• The Money Trail to Ginni Thomas Emails to Overturn Biden’s Election Leads to Charles Koch
• Two Dow Stocks, Two Cultures of Corruption: Boeing versus JPMorgan Chase
• Without Registering as Stock Exchanges, Citadel Securities and Virtu Financial Account for More Stock Trading than the New York Stock Exchange
• The Wall Street Journal’s Editorial Page Is Back to Propping Up Bad Actors: This Time It’s the Wife of Clarence Thomas
• The Fed’s Secret Repo Loans, another News Blackout, and a French Bank Scandal
C9. Business (Rentierism: money via imports, real-estate, tourism, insurance, fear, privatization)
ee Business focuses on the rentier diversions of the oligarchy, the domination by a merchant mafia, making money from unproductive land sales, tourism, insurance, advertising, etc. – the charade of corporate press releases disguised as ‘news’
• Fire erupts near Colombo Gold Center
• Retailers appeal for cost-sharing from business partners
‘Retailers’ Association (SLRA) landlords, lessors, and business partners to reduce leases and rentals. The SLRA currently represents 9 sectors in the retail industry, namely FMCG; Clothing, Fashion and Jewellery; Shelter and Housing; Household and Consumer Durables; Footwear and Accessories; E-Commerce; Mobility; Entertainment, Restaurant, and QSR; Healthcare and Wellness’
• SL-India trade up by 40% in 2021, says Indian envoy
‘Addressing National Logistic Awards 2022 of the SL Logistics and Freight Forwarders’ Association (SLFFA) in Colombo..India is the 3rd largest export destination behind the US and European Union.
• Lankan Angel Network (LAN) channels Rs. 150m into tech startups, currently evaluating 5-10 startups for investment
‘Investment Committee (IC) includes LAN Board Member Anarkali Moonesinghe and Business Consultant Dumindra Ratnayake, as well as Nathan Sivagananathan, Co-Founder of Hatch Works; Mangala Karunaratne, Founder/CEO of Calcey Technologies; Imal Kalutotage, Founder/CEO of NCINGA; and Shiluka Goonewardene, Principal for Deal Advisory at KPMG.’
• Nations Trust Private Banking Members get exclusive access to Geoffrey Bawa
• Proposed new Tourism Act comes under fire for ‘divorcing private sector involvement’
• Sarrah Sammoon appointed to the Board of Southeast Asian Leadership Academy
‘board members are NiniDaing (Malaysia), Marcellinus Jerry Winata (Indonesia) and Harley Trung (Vietnam). Board also includes Anand Sharma (Founder of SEALA, USA), Anun Dhawan (Chairperson SEALA, India), Arj Wignaraja (Past Chair, Sri Lanka), Ashok Mittal (India), Bill Starnes (Past Chair SIBF, Current Head of Faculty, USA), Saad Khan (Pakistan)’
C10. Politics (Anti-parliament discourse, unelected constitution)
ee Politics points to the constant diversions and spectacles and the mercantile and financial forces funding the political actors, of policy hijacked by private interests minus public oversight.
• The monks return to leadership – Nalin de Silva
• Please Vajira please Ranil – Nalin de Silva
• If Ranil had Been PM – Nalin de Silva
• What solutions do those wishing to replace Gothabaya and become President Have? – Nalin de Silva
• Nalagiri damanaya at Abayaramaya?
• Sacked govt dissidents to bring constitutional amendment to keep dual citizens at bay
• Citizens Enraged in Sri Lanka
• Section of SJB behind planned protest – intelligence agencies
• Prez Media blames ‘extremists’, HRCSL warns against using PTA
• Public Security Minister rules out extremist involvement
• Resentful youth fall prey to sinister elements with hidden agendas, masquerading as liberators
• Gammanpila warns of premeditated violence …
• SLPP dissident group of 11 parties says no to proposed violent protest tomorrow, instead urges Parliament to vote out incumbent regime
• ‘Dismiss Cabinet, appoint interim Govt.’
• SLFP requests immediate caretaker Govt.
• Sri Lanka President declares emergency as economic crisis spark protests
• UN Sri Lanka concerned over violence during economic crisis protest; calls for restraint
• Emergence of Champika’s outfit against backdrop of economic chaos
• UNP mum on alleged deal with govt.
• Wimal hints at forming new opposition group
• JVP crowd in Nugegoda larger than the turnout at the Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB) protest
‘“It is 18 months after the elections were held and we have had 21 cabinet reshuffles. There have been more than 30 resignations of ministry secretaries, directors, and chairmen of institutions’
• To consider funding from expatriate Tamil groups is to vow a candle to the Devil
• Leaderless uprisings indicative of the failure of the Opposition to win people’s confidence
• Tense situation at SJB protest rally in Jaffna
• Mirihana events were a result of collapsed political structure: Ranil
• Who’s the real mastermind behind Thursday’s (31) violence ? – Manusha
• The Attributes of the 7 Million who Destroyed Sri Lanka
• During President Chandrika’s tenure, a large number of MPs became bar owners.
• Aijaz Ahmad: Critic, Scholar, Communist
• The World Is Actually Ending
• Apocalypse Skills I’d Like To Teach My Children
• How White Empire Is Cracking Up
• Serious effort at finding a solution: USAID NPC Perera
• Marxism is a Science (1992) – Deng Xiaoping
‘Revolution means the emancipation of the productive forces, and so does reform. The overthrow of the reactionary rule of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism helped release the productive forces of the Chinese people’
• So you’ve decided you want to abolish the value-form. Now what?
• Madeleine Albright is Dead, but Intersectional Imperialism is Alive and Well
‘Albright ended her life as chair of the National Democratic Institute (NDI), a soft power organization funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and the U.S. Department of State. The NDI carries forth Brzezinski’s legacy of destabilization through public support for regime change operations once seen as the dirty work the CIA’
• New McCarthyism Silences the Black and Other Radical Left
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.
• Social media researcher Sanjana Hattotuwa tweets apparent restriction of President’s FB
• Sri Lanka Telecom takes three channels temporarily off PeoTV citing payment difficulties
• Great Department Stores of Old Colombo
‘Australian beef, Australian cheese, Oxford sausages, tinned meats and fish, meat pastes and fish pastes, peas and asparagus and peaches and jams- anything that has a label stuck on a bottle or tin indicating that it was manufactured in Australia, New Zealand, or in Great Britain, all of which had “a hypnotic effect upon Colombo’s society ladies”’.
• How English Language Initiated the Idea of Nationalism in India
• Fables cooked up by NATO’s publicity machine.
• 4 Big Takeaways From The New York Times’s Attempt To Control The Hunter Biden Narrative