Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Hollywood vs. the Internet and restrictive IP laws.

Couple of pieces on Nigeria: one on Goodluck Jonathan’s journey (and Presidential priorities); the other on its economic potential.

Asia’s new growth model; how real is China’s growth; China’s non-bank credit bubble. Also: China’s trash-to-energy landfills.

Ahmadinejad is in trouble: been accused of breaking the law in managing Iran’s oil by conservatives in Iran’s parliament; also, there’s some trouble over the killing of an activist.

Are secondary stock markets for pre-IPO companies the next new opportunity for fraud or abuse?

Africa surveys its science: they’re doing less of it.

More on the virulent E. Coli strain in Germany, presumably from Spanish cucumbers. (It’s antibiotically resistant, which is very worrying.)

Should we embrace competitive bidding in Medicare?

India’s food troubles:
“No one cares about the sell-by dates of bread,” one man commented. “What happens when the bread gets old in the village stalls? They fry it in oil and sell it as bread pakora instead.” In the 600,000 villages and towns in non-metropolitan India, I learned, none of the teeming hundreds of millions of residents cared about the mechanized processes and international standards of hygiene that would allow India to join the industrialized nations in their eating habits.

Perhaps that is because those hundreds of millions have more fundamental concerns when it comes to food. The enthusiasm for expiration dates at the Summit must seem peculiar to the poor in a country where 43 percent of children under the age of five are malnourished. In sub-Saharan Africa, the figure is 28 percent; it’s 7 percent in China, to which India is so often compared. The Indian government’s own data show that 800 million Indians live on about twenty rupees (about $0.50) a day. Half of those are farmers who produce food that they, for the most part, cannot afford to eat thanks to the demands of speculators and affluent urban consumers.

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