Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone: Issue #298 - Drishtikone Newsletter is ONE YEAR OLD today

We started today one year back. We recap our journey with some of the most significant articles and discussions we have had. Please dig in.

Image by Dimitris Vetsikas from Pixabay

“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.” ― Marcus Aurelius


To start is easy. To sustain is critical.

I was never good at writing. Passion for various indiscriminate topics and cutting through the illogical crap brought me to this medium.

Today this newsletter is ONE YEAR old. A recap of this journey. Please do check out some important milestones, changes, and important articles over time.

Please do leave a comment below. It will help us understand if this has indeed been a worthwhile journey.

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Start of the Drishtikone newsletter

Last year as COVID raged through the world, and work establishments closed down, work from home became the norm. Working from home brought many issues and possibilities. One of those possibilities was saving on the travel to work - which was anywhere from 2-3 hours daily.

Using that time constructively I started this newsletter.

On May 6th, 2020.

We started off on the newsletter app site called Revue. Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #1

Now, Revue truly has some astonishingly great ways to curate news, articles, links for creating an amazing newsletter. Just a great set of integration with your own past newsletters, clips saved on Refind, URLs (news/articles) saved on Pocket, your Tweets, any RSS feeds that you may like and there is a way to bookmark any article you read via a bookmarklet from Revue for Chrome.

What started off as just a curated email to subscribers, soon started evolving. By the 9th issue (Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #9 - Truth and Subversion of voices), the “today’s picks” section had been renamed as “nota bene” which carries on till today.

Sometimes one thinks what would have made a working individual take this plunge and hope to keep writing a newsletter daily for a year? Well, one knew that there was a blog at Drishtikone, which had close to 8000 articles on it since 2005. So, if one found no way forward on a day, then archives from that blog could serve as a way to get the content.

Initially, I did lean on old and sometimes specially written blog posts which were then linked. But it didn’t work well with the way of writing the newsletter for me.

The 20th issue (Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #20) was about COVID and how the lust for sex amongst the church priests was insatiable even during the lockdown. We also looked at how a member of a Vatican body was the Chancellor at Nalanda University.

Around this time, the last section for videos was shaping up.

During this time we looked at the race relationships in the US specifically in the wake of George Floyd’s killing (Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #30). We also shared our blog on “A Class Divided” and the role of police in some detail.

The 42nd issue - Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #42: The China Wars - was on China. In this issue, we also shared an article that Donald Trump’s main guy on China - Peter Navarro had penned for Drishtikone when he was a professor at the University of California. This became probably the first collaboration with Vivek Agnihotri for his series on serious and esoteric topics. A collaboration that has continued until now.

Watch this brilliant production on the China topic.

On June 14th, as the nation was shocked into silence by the murder of Sushant Singh Rajput, we shared our agony at his ‘suicide’. Sushant Singh Rajput - the lost journey

The first major milestone was the 50th issue. This was about the COVID spike in the US and the battle with China. (Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #50: Return of the Corona and the Chinese Situation).

It was July12th and we saw the devastation by COVID globally even by then was staggering.

Researchers from the University of Sydney have created a detailed model of the global economy. They have found that the coronavirus pandemic and measures to slow its spread cost the global economy $3.8 trillion (£3 trillion), and put 147 million people out of work.  (Issue #61: Near Death Experiences)

Yes, we had also explored the Near-Death Experiences.

We wanted to discuss issues that very few people discuss. (Issue #64: Virtual Water Trade and its impact)

Virtual water trade was one such issue. Water is a ticking time bomb. Countries are importing water-intensive crops and products from other countries thus making those (often poorer) countries water-deficient. When meat, specifically beef is exported it incurs the greatest virtual water loss for the exporting country.

From the environmental standpoint, the cattle smuggling happening from India to Bangladesh has to be viewed from that perspective. (Check this blog post)

The 75th issue looked at Democracy as a viable way forward. (Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #75: Democracy and Abstractions)

A Colombian Englightened master had warned about people who have no history. No sense or documentation of history. (Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone - Issue #96: People without History; Warning from an Enlightened One from Colombian Tribe).

By the time we reached a century of our posts, we had started doing long form posts on one topic and moved away from curated posts. We did have more than one topic many times, but one topic formed the basis. In the Issue #101 - we tried to analyze why the Christian establishment in the Palghar area would have wanted to kill the Sadhus. Why were the Sadhus and priests the new targets? When we looked at history of Christian persecution of women in Europe, the answer was obvious. The Hindu Sadhus made Jesus look ordinary. They were to Hinduism what the enlightened women (witches) were to Europe during Christianity’s rise.

The targeting of the Brahmins and then Sadhus and Sages in India is akin to the witch-burnings in medieval Europe. When those who work selflessly - like the Sadhus/Sages - in our midst without any expectation, then they take away the whole “savior/victim/sacrifice” narrative that surrounds Jesus. Why would anyone follow Jesus, when many such beings walk in our midst live?! The Hindu Sadhus and Yogis are the biggest strike against the story of Jesus. He surely had no distinction of being the “only savior”, when thousands and millions like him or even more accomplished roam the streets, mountains, temple lands of India. That is why Palghar was necessary for the missionaries. ( Issue #101: Palghar Sadhu murders and Witch burning)

The long-form writing and moving away from curated newsletters was happening now and one felt that the newsletter needed more serious writing going forward.

Change of platform

The last issue on Revue was Issue #104: Dalrymple and his shenanigans; British Concentration Camps.

We migrated the entire history to a new platform - substack. The rest of the journey was done in Substack.

The format changed at this time - with a leading photo followed by a daily quote and then - as the first initial part which sometimes looked at things philosophically and sometimes using the spiritual underpinnings for the top half. That was followed by the main topic, nota bene, and the video section. The market bytes had not yet been added.

Everyone had their favorite sections. As a personal note, I write the initial section - philosophical/spiritual commentary - in the end. For, it is the most cathartic part of the newsletter as a writer. I pour my atma out there.

The first issue on Substack was about a concept that Alan Greenspan, Federal Reserve’s 13th Chairman from 1987 to 2006, had shared in one of his lectures. The Plutonomies. And the rest. All the global rich form the first part. Issue #105 - The Plutonomy and the Rest; Walking marriages of Matriarchy

And thus started the daily exercise of looking for “a topic” and research it and write on it. It wasn’t easy - finalizing the topic. The rest was far simpler.

The first few issues were on the evangelical rackets, scams and the power games that are played to destroy other civilizations.

It started off by critically evaluating a charlatan who has been made into an icon in India. Dispassionate, detailed, and well-researched piece on “Mother” Teresa.

Issue # 109 remained as one of the top three read issues to date.

During this time, we were looking at the Indo-China stand-off using open-source research and analysis as opposed to the garbage that was passed off in India’s (China-paid) mainstream media. Often what we would share would become news in a few days.

We looked at the drug trade in India and also the Sushant Singh Rajput case.

We first looked Caste system and its origins in Issue # 121.

On September 11, 2020, we made a detailed and strong case - based on evidence from various reporting sources that Pakistan’s establishment was responsible for planning and orchestrating the 9-11 attacks. Issue #122 - Who REALLY carried out the 9-11 attacks? This would easily be one of the most significant issues we have written.

Everyone writes about Godhra and the details related to it as well as the timeline and Modi’s actions to stop the 2002 riots. But everyone misses one point - Operation Parakaram. What was its impact on Gujarat riots and the corollary - Was Godhra and subsequent riots a way to stop India’s attack on Pakistan? (Issue #124 - Was Godhra linked to Operation Parakram?)

This was in line with our tradition of looking at things that no one looks at and also synthesize news and events that no one was doing.

Then came another significant post on the global spirituality sensation - Rumi. Quite contrary to the quotes that are attributed to him, the real translations of his verses from Persian gave a very different and disturbing picture.

We had our translations from a group of Persian youngsters who have created a social media presence from Iran and translate Rumi’s verses from their own language to English. Coleman Barks, the guy who ostensibly “translated” Rumi’s works did not know any Persian himself. He had just made his own shit up as one can put in “dignified spiritual lingo”. Issue #129 - The Real Bigoted and Racist Moulana Rumi

The Sushant Singh case brought two things into focus - Bollywood’s shade deals and Narco-terrorism. We did a deep dive into the sudden success of Indian movies in China - another one of the most-read posts to date. (Issue #134 - Sudden Success of Bollywood Movies in China - An Analysis)

Today people are talking of the Armenian-Azerbaijan conflict and the implications. We detailed it out for our readers in September 2020.

Was Bhagat Singh an atheist? We look at his writings and leftist claims seriously.

On the NGO front, there was ample proof from credible sources that Amnesty International was working with the Jehadis and backs their agenda. No one was looking at these things. We did. Issue #140 - Amnesty International: 'Violent Jihad is a Right!'

Was India a rape country? Facts did not bear it out. But they needed to be told.

Ever since one started listening to Pakistanis and their bigoted hatred against Hindus, one always heard of one term - “Hindu Baniya.” One often wondered as to why when the Christians were fighting the “Hindu Brahmins”, did the Pakistanis and Muslims go after the “Baniya”. A look into the pre-British banking system gave some very interesting insights! It also showed why India was lost.  Issue #148 - Ways of pre-British Indian Bankers and how India lost

The battle between Arnab Goswami and the Maharashtra government was heating up. Arnab was jailed. It reminded one of the Rowlatt Act. But most importantly, when we looked at the handling of the case, we realized that the court had not followed the dictum that has been established by the late eminent jurist Justice Iyer - Bail is the rule, jail is the exception. We discussed that in the context of the only impeachment of an Indian judge in history - that of Justice Sinha. Issue #177 - Bail is the Rule, Jail is an Exception! Despite all the analysis and some in support of Arnab, no one was discussing the case from the standpoint of the legal precedence. Which was how it should have been done!

A view that was mirrored in how Harish Salve argued the Arnab case in Supreme Court.  Issue #179 - The Doomed Autogolpe. IN fact, later Justice Chandrachud reprimanded the Mumbai High Court - using the exact arguments and case laws that we had shared in our article! Issue #191 - Bringing down a Giant

The Market Corner section made its first appearance in issue # 178.

To know the power of the Gandhis, one needs to know their network. That is what we looked into in Issue #183 - Agusta Westland, Michel, Gandhis, and Gaddafi!

As China kept playing its games, it was important to go ahead and analyze China. In terms of its vulnerabilities that India could exploit.  Issue #185 - the Indian Ocean and Global Trade

The Farm Bills and Khalistan

When the Farm Bills were brought in and protests started, no one wanted to look at the situation of farmers that the farm bills were trying to fight. When you did compare the past, it was obvious that anyone supporting the protests was a supporter of a system of psychopaths. This was a very painful issue to even write. Issue #192 - A System of Psychopaths!

All the protests were going on while India was seeing bumper crops. So when one looked into the details one was startled! Issue #232 - The Fake Farmers!

Farm Bills also brought another threat out in the open - Khalistan. So we looked at it in different ways.

Tech and Science future and the past

The threat of targeted bioweapons is real and scary. One needs to carefully scan through the many frontiers which have opened up with respect to viruses and genetic targeting. Specifically by China. (Issue #196 - Our Barbarik Future) We do believe now that this second wave attack may actually be an example of such a weapon.

It has been the objective of the West to portray India as a backward culture. So when the vaccines were coming out, there was a talk of how the Indians have always been wary of the vaccines, which wasn’t the truth. However, the unscrupulous media kept running an agenda to push misinformation on the vaccines to cast aspersions (Issue #218 - Quo usque tandem abutere, Catilina, patientia nostra?). When we looked into the past, we found some startling facts. Not only was vaccination a part of Indian medical tradition, but there existed an inoculation regimen in our rural areas just before the British dismantled it all. It is a must-read! Issue #205 – Vaccines & Ancient India

In the coming issues, we discussed the great importance of the UPI/RuPay mechanism (Issue #215 - The UPI/RuPay Juggernaut), the importance of Artificial Intelligence, and the neo-colonialism threat (Issue #216 - Coloniality of AI), Technology, and how it was contributing to threats against India (Issue #224 - The Tech Armageddon) and unusual killings of Indian scientists (Issue #217 - The Surreptitious Killer).

We often talk of righteousness. What is it? And how is it the go-to framework for power proliferation? A very important discussion based on Christian theology. Issue #228 - The Righteousness Framework

The Indian media and most of the analysts in India were clueless about why Internet and Human right was talked about so much. Silly and emotional arguments were prevalent everywhere. The facts were astonishing - Issue #238 - Internet as Human Right

Some of the other important posts have been:  

You will see that the topics have ranged from technology to terrorism to politics to agriculture to history to geopolitics and even entertainment and philosophy, religion and spirituality.

Every topic has been handled with honesty and an eye for detail.

market corner: 10 quick bytes

  1. Indian Railways readies 70,000 isolation beds in more than 4,400 Covid Care coaches - more

  2. MLAs are getting richer; politics is getting dirtier, shows ADR report - more

  3. Company incorporations dip 27% sequentially in April as business sentiment sours amid the second wave - more

  4. COVID to shave off 20-25% of auto fuel demand in April - more

  5. Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) 3.0: Hospitality MSMEs urge govt for changes in borrower status, calculation of outstandings, etc - more

  6. World food price index climbs in April, highest since mid-2014: FAO - more

  7. LIC to have five working days starting from May 10 - more

  8. Consumer sentiment index falls 3.8% in April, the sharpest drop since May 2020: CMIE - more

  9. COVID: Rs 8 lakh crore package needed to support lower-income groups, says report - more

  10. Nuvoco Vistas files DRHP for Rs 5,000 crore IPO; marks capital markets comeback by Karasanbhai Patel-backed Nirma - more

nota bene

Bengal hires Quacks for COVID: The newly elected West Bengal government, under the leadership of third-time Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, has decided to use 2,75,000 quack doctors as the first line of defense against the second wave of Covid-19, as per a report in Hindustan Times. As per official stats, the number of cases has risen by 5-8 times in rural regions of Bengal compared to last year’s peak. Reports suggest that the state health department will soon issue a dos and don’ts list for the quacks to handle Covid-19 patients. (Source)

Another TMC-post-poll lynching victim: Another youth has become the victim of ongoing attacks by TMC workers against opposition party workers in West Bengal. 22-years-old RSS worker Balaram Majhi, who was mercilessly beaten by TMC goons on Tuesday, succumbed to injuries later in that day. According to sources, TMC workers had attacked Majhi on Tuesday night at his residence in Sripur village in the Ketugram Tehsil in East Bardhaman district. Apart from beating him badly, his house was also vandalized by the allegedly Muslim goons. Balaram Majhi tried to escape from the attack, but he was nabbed by the attackers. He was pinned to the ground and beaten badly, and he was left by the attackers in a very serious condition. (Source)

Union Minister convoy attacked in Bengal: In another case of an attack on Bhartiya Janata Party member following the declaration of assembly elections in West Bengal, the convoy of Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan was attached in West Bengal. The Union Minister and BJP leader shared a video on his official Twitter account which showed a number of people surrounding his vehicle with sticks in their hands. They can be seen attacking the vehicles in the convoy of the BJP leader. (Source)

COVID increasing Diabetes: Among COVID-19’s many ripple effects, the worsening of the global diabetes burden could carry a heavy public health toll. The underlying mechanisms stoking new-onset diabetes aren’t clear, though some doctors suspect the SARS-CoV-2 virus may damage the pancreas, the gland that makes insulin that is needed to convert blood sugar into energy. Sedentary lifestyles brought on by lockdowns could also be playing a role, as might late diagnoses after people avoided doctors’ offices. Even some children’s mild coronavirus cases can be followed by the swift onset of diabetes, scientists found. Considered a lung disease in the early days of the pandemic, COVID-19 is increasingly recognized for its ability to ravage multiple organs and bodily systems, causing persistent and sometimes debilitating symptoms in 1 in 10 sufferers months after their apparent recovery. (Source)

Transparent Wood: Scientists in Sweden have developed a new kind of 'transparent' wood that could one day replace standard glass windows.  Polymers in wood's cell walls, called lignin, prevent almost all light from passing through.  By replacing the lignin with an oil derived from orange peels and other citrus waste, researchers at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm created a composite material that's nearly 90 percent transparent—and far more environmentally friendly. (Source)

video corner: Who are the Parsis?

Parsis are the backbone of modern business in India. Who are they and what does their community think? Very little is discussed about them. Here is a very informative video.

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