That Chinese “BreedReady” Database – Check The Translation

A basic truism is that languages don’t map exactly over each other and that’s the most likely explanation for this database from China detailing “BreedReady” women. That languages don’t map exactly should be obvious even to the most monolingual of English speakers. We all know that “Let’s have lunch sometime” when said by an American means “Hope to see you never and definitely not while eating”. Similarly, “That’s lovely” when said by a Brit does not necessarily mean it is lovely and “How quaint” isn’t praise for the cuteness of the thing.…

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We Know China’s Been Lying About GDP – But How Much?

A claim that China’s been lying about the GDP numbers this past decade. The thing is, we know, absolutely and without doubt, that China and parts of it have been lying about GDP this past decade. The only thing is, how much have who been lying?

In more detail we know, absolutely and without doubt, that the various provinces have been lying about the growth in their own province. Simply because we’re in a communist system, with a plan, outperforming the plan improves careers.…

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Indonesia’s Sulawesi Gold Mine Disaster – The Value Of Global Capitalism

That an illegal and artisanal gold mine on Sulawesi in Indonesia has collapsed, killing perhaps 100 people, is a tragedy. It’s at minimum 100 tragedies multiplied by the number those dead left behind in fact. It’s also a lesson in the disutility of the local and personal economy and in favour of the global capitalism which does these things right.

For consider what these guys were actually doing. Effectively, using techniques a century or two old to go mining.…

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India Should Preserve Forest Animals Or Forest Peoples?

It’s easy enough to just confirm priors here over whether India should be preserving forest dwelling peoples or forest dwelling animals. Unfortunately, such knee jerk prejudices don’t really give us all that good a guide to what we should actually do. For we’ve a simple conflict here, between those people and those areas and animals.

If we’re the sort of misanthrope, humanophobic, that populates the environmental movements the answer is obvious. Just clear all those poor people out so that I can bask in the luxury of knowing there’s unadulterated wilderness out there.…

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Pakistan’s Sewage Works Show How Far We’ve Still Got To Go With Polio

Here in the rich countries we hardly even think of polio these days. Back when oldsters like me were young it was still a memory but one kept at bay by Jonas Salk’s polio vaccine. For the generation before it was a horror that swept through the population crippling, paralysing and even killing children. The memory of how awful it was has gone – although we might occasionally think of those like Julian Critchley struck down in old age by post-polio syndrome.…

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How Does This Work? Indonesian Ride Hailing Scam Discovered

Four men have been arrested for a ride hailing scam in Indonesia. The difficulty is in working out how the scam worked. For they were drivers for the app, they were booking fake rides. OK, that’s fine, we can see that this means they were listed as making more rides.

But how did they make money out of this? The app itself isn’t going to pay out commission when it hasn’t received funds itself. Or at least, no one sane would design an app to do so.…

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India Raises Sugar Prices To Correct Problems With Earlier Government Mistake

India has just raised the minimum selling price for sugar in a bid to undo the problems caused by an earlier decision by the very same Indian government. This isn’t really quite the way to do it – better to undo that earlier mistake, not compound matters. But as we so often say around here, election time, who has the ability to be reasonable?

So, the news itself:

The government’s move to increase the minimum selling price of sugar will augur well for the mills and is expected to increase their operating profit margins by 6 percent, says a report.

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A Bad Mistake, India Moots Raising National Minimum Wage – It’s Too High Already

It’s not surprising that this is happening, India mooting a rise in the national minimum wage. There is, after all, an election in the offing. Just when we would expect crowd pleasing but bad ideas to surface. The problem here is that the Indian minimum wage is already too high. Increasing something that’s too high is not sensible policy. But, you know, elections, politics:

The Narendra Modi government-appointed expert panel has suggested the minimum wage at Rs 375 per day, higher than the current of Rs 321 for farm or unskilled workers and Rs 371 for semi-skilled workers.

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Nasa And India Confirm The Environmental Kuznets Curve As World Greens

A standard finding in economics has just been confirmed by Nasa – the world greens as it gets richer. The latest studies show that the world is indeed getting greener and that it’s India and China leading the way. This is as it should be, as it has been predicted it will be too as a result of something called the environmental Kuznets curve. Essentially, truly poor places will cut anything down in search of the next meal, it’s as a place gets richer that people have the option to make it look nice too.…

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Fancy Killing People For a Living? Sri Lanka’s Advertising For Hangmen

Perhaps you’re a psychopath who enjoys the terror on peoples’ faces as they understand they’re just about to die. Possibly you’re a well meaning and good natured sort who just thinks the world would be a better place without certain types in it. Whichever it is that leads to your desire to kill people your luck is in. For Sri Lanka is looking to hire hangmen:

Sri Lanka began advertising for hangmen this week, as the country’s president ramps up his war on drugs.

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