Amritsar And Peterloo – Did Massacres Happen Without White Imperialism And Empire?

An interesting question that isn’t being asked. Have massacres, crimes, slaughters, happened without white Europeans building empires?

At St Peter’s Field in Manchester, England on Monday August 16 1819, an estimated 18 men, women and a child were massacred by British cavalry and up to 500 were wounded. “Peterloo” has come to play an important role in working-class, radical and reformist history in Britain – as well as in the history of democracy. In contrast to Peterloo, there has been little commemoration of the 1919 Amritsar Massacre in Britain – which saw up to 600 men, women and children murdered by the British Indian Army – and another 1,500 to 1,800 wounded.

See More

India’s Tiger Population Expands Due To Increased Urbanisation

India is urbanising rapidly – India’s tiger population is expanding. There is a link between these two facts, this is not a coincidence.

When we use extensive peasant agriculture to make a living then we use lots and lots and lots of land to do so. This means that there’s not much land left over for wildlife:

India’s tiger population has increased by a third in four years, bringing the animal back from the brink of extinction.

See More

Jet Airways’ Banks May Need To Swallow A 75% Haircut On Their Loans

This sounds a little extraordinary, that the varied lenders to Jet Airways will need to swallow a 75% haircut on the loans they made to the company. It’s not on a trivial sum either, Rs 14,000 crore is mentioned as a total sum. The problem here being that there aren’t really all that many assets to back that up. This then telling us something about Indian banking, that politically favoured companies can indeed borrow in a manner that might not be all that economically wise.…

See More

Maybe India’s Right – RBI States Cryptocurrency Adds Nothing To The Economy

This new document from the Reserve Bank of India is less than an outright condemnation of cryptocurrency even while it points to officialdom thinking that way. Other actions also rather show the official disapproval of the new technology. And who knows, they might well be right. It’s not obvious or even apparent that there’s anything in cryptocurrency that is of great use to anyone.

That doesn’t mean that a ban is justified – there are plenty of things which are of no great use which we don’t ban, vide Simon Cowell.…

See More

India’s Jet Airways Suspends Operations – This Is Why We Need Capital And Capitalists

India’s Jet Airways has been in trouble for months now. They’ve been losing money and banks won’t lend any more – sensibly enough, it’s a money pit. All of which is a useful lesson in why we need capital and capitalists. There’s got to be someone there able and willing to cover losses in the bad times – that’s what they get the profits for in the good.

This is the part of the system that some find so terribly hard to understand.…

See More

Apple To Make iPhones In India – Won’t Make Much Difference To Be Honest

Apple and Foxconn are getting together to fulfill one of the dearest wishes of Modi’s government in India – they’re going to start manufacturing up to date iPhones in the country. That this announcement comes at the beginning of the vast voting exercise that is an Indian general election, well, why not time such announcements for their maximum value?

The thing is that the move isn’t going to make all that much difference. Sure, there will be some dodging of import tariffs but even then it’s not a certainty that Indian iPhone prices will fall:

India has become the fastest-growing smartphone market in the world, while China stagnates and Apple loses share to local competitors such as Huawei Technologies Co.

See More

Of Course India Should Have Sold ONGC’s Oil And Gas Fields To Foreigners

There are those who insist that a national government must own the company which extracts natural resources from the territory of that country. This is not so – for the government already owns the natural resources themselves. There is thus no problem with a foreigner doing the digging or drilling. For the government can always, but always, make sure that near all the profits flow to the government. They do, after all, control the tax system.…

See More

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.…

See More

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.

See More

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.

See More