8,000 artefacts and rising: City dig pronounced the 'most important ever' in London – Home News – UK – The Independent.
When archaeologists were called to a site in the City of London where an ugly office block and a bar once stood, they were sceptical that it held any secrets.
Yet six months into the dig on Bloomberg Place, a three-acre site close to Mansion House tube station, experts believed they have stumbled across the most important find of Roman London artefacts in recent memory and have dubbed it the “Pompeii of the north”.
A critical and insightful review of “Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty” by Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo in Review of Agrarian Studies.
“Few volumes in contemporary economics have been more lauded, and have summarised a zeitgeist, as much as Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Poor Economics.1 The book has received prominent international prizes (The Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year, for example), and been widely read, reviewed, and praised, including by leading economists and philanthropists.”
“It is, perhaps, not too difficult to understand why the prescription of Poor Economics has enjoyed as much circulation as it has, in particular among metropolitan development policy-making elites, although increasingly also elsewhere.10 It appeals to powerful but flawed metropolitan predispositions: a desire to “fix” things with simpleminded mono-causal reasoning, allied with the conviction that technology, through the analysis of data using randomised trials, makes it possible to do so. Its technocratic premises, its naïve view of politics and society, and its unselfconscious do-goodism make for a self-affirming picture of the world.11 It is unfortunate that it does so little to explain it.’
“The very foundation of the international order is that the United States has the right to use violence at will.”
US control is diminishing, but it still thinks it owns the world | Noam Chomsky | guardian.co.uk.
Unless the government regulates the growth of the private sector and makes it accountable, the worn-down public health infrastructure cannot be revitalised
The Hindu : Opinion / Lead : No sweetening this bitter pill.
Wal-Mart de Mexico was an aggressive and creative corrupter, offering large payoffs to get what the law otherwise prohibited, an examination by The New York Times found.
UFRaw (http://ufraw.sourceforge.net) is a free and open source software to “read and manipulate raw images from digital cameras.” UFRaw can be used on its own or as a plug-in for GIMP, a free/open source replacement for photoshop.
The advantage of using UFRaw is that it can read a variety of RAW file formats and you would not need to change your software when you use different cameras.
“Colorado has at least a half dozen major fires burning throughout the state. Fueled by high winds, record heat and dryness, 2012 has become Colorado’s worst wildfire season in a decade.”
Fritz Theilen: Member of the Edelweiss Pirates, the children who resisted Hitler
Fritz Theilen, tool maker and anti-Nazi activist: born Cologne 27 September 1927; died Frauwüllesheim 18 April 2012.
Matisse: An old master who loved to learn new tricks
“An exhibition at the Pompidou in Paris shows Matisse’s mastery of form, colour and style to stunning effect, says Adrian Hamilton
It would be almost impossible to produce a bad exhibition of Matisse…You enter a room of his works and your eyes are transformed. It’s the colour of course, those reds and deep greens, always fresh and balanced. And then there’s the rhythm, the curved lines of flesh and flower and the soft straight lines of wall and window. But most of all it is something always uplifting in the way that he seeks and communicates the harmony of life.”
The Hindu : Opinion / Interview : Bofors was a game-changer, both for Indian politics and journalism.
“I think what worked for us at The Hindu was a methodical approach, an investigative discipline, a way of journalism that was factual, persistent, patient — and fair and just. We relied almost exclusively on documents, more documents, hundreds of documents, in fact, all of them laid out across pages and published in facsimile form in The Hindu (in the pre-digital age). We played the devil’s advocate on key story angles, verifying every detail.”
A report, based on data from the 2011 Census of India, on access of Indian households to basic amenities.
The Hindu : News / National : Half of India’s homes have cellphones, but not toilets.
- “Only 46.9 per cent of the total 246.6 million households have toilet facilities.”
- “Just 32 per cent of the households use treated water for drinking and 17 per cent still fetch drinking water from a source located more than 500 metres in rural areas or 100 metres in urban centres.”
- “Two-thirds of households continue to use firewood, crop residue, cow dung cakes or coal for cooking — putting women to significant health hazards and hardship.”
- “There has been an 11 percentage point increase in households using electricity, from 56 per cent to 67 per cent.”
- “Though there has been a nine percentage point jump in the numbers of households who own a two-wheeler, 45 per cent own a cycle, which remains the primary mode of transport.”
- “The data cast light on the changing character of the media. There has been a 16 per cent increase in the number of households watching television, but a 15 per cent decline in the use of radios and transistors. A total of 47.2 per cent of households own a television; only 19.9 per cent have either radio or transistors.”
More detailed data from the 2011 Houselisting and Housing Census are available here.
The Hindu : Opinion / Lead : Salman Rushdie & India’s new theocracy.
“Salman Rushdie’s censoring-out from the ongoing literary festival in Jaipur will be remembered as a milestone that marked the slow motion disintegration of India’s secular state.”
The Hindu : Opinion / Op-Ed : The glory and the blemishes of the Indian news media.
“Our free media, including our largely unfettered press, are a hugely important asset for democratic India. And yet the celebration of the Indian news media can go only so far — and no further. There are at least two barriers to quality that need to be overcome. The first is some real laxity in professionalism in achieving accuracy. The second is the bias, often implicit, in the choice of what news to cover and what to ignore, and the way this bias relates particularly to class divisions in India.”