Category Archives: Notes

Health system regulation in India

 The medical establishment has become a threat to health

– Ivan Illich begins his book “Limits to Medicine: Medical Nemesis” (1975) with these lines

Going by recent events, Illich’s trenchant criticism of Western medical

Ivan Illich’s classic 1975 book “Limits to Medicine: The Medical Nemesis”. Clink image to download pdf of book

establishments is also pertinent to healthcare in India. First, there was Aamir Khan’s Satyameva Jayate TV episode on corruption in India’s healthcare sector, which provoked anger at the system and discomfort at (what some felt was) his sanctimonious treatment of the issue. Then, the entry, exit, and re-entry of an allegedly corrupt doctor, Ketan Desai, as head of the Medical Council of India

made news.

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Yali’s ponder and the “new” world

The appellation New world says it all about the Americas; that this landmass was

The medieval Icelandic conception of northern regions, based on an interpretive sketch. Illustration by David Trochos for Wikimedia Commons. Based on A.A. Bjornbo “Vikings: The North Atlantic Saga” (ISBN 1560989955) p262.

world that was not known to have existed before the old world. What made Americas new? And for whom was it new? And why were they discovered so late? Continue reading

Remembering Hitchens


Hitchens’ spirited debates on religion, particularly the monotheistic religions earned him a lot of (un)friends

Today would have been Christopher Hitchens’ 63rd birthday. He died young. A few more years would have certainly produced more than a fair share of good debates and provocatively enlightening reactions that were characteristic of Hitchens; youtube is full of many such. 

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Pat’s at it again

Pat Robertson’s at it again! In this super-funny post on whyevolutionistrue which linked to a talk show with Pat Robertson, that famous televangelist and now a chancellor of his own university, he answers a question on “Why are there miracles for Africans but not Americans?” hinting at possible links to Ivy League education and teaching of Evolution. Continue reading


A quiet secluded life in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people to whom it is easy to do good, and who are not accustomed to have it done to them; then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one’s neighbour – such is my idea of happiness.”

Leo Tolstoy from Family Happiness

It is mid-March and the Belgian spring has no inclination towards emerging from the clutches of the winter. Yes, the days are getting longer and skies are getting bluer, but the temperature and the snow have no intention of letting up! Today morning I wake up in a friend’s place at a small village south of Brussels to a freezing yet sunny -14 degrees!

(Click on photos for larger version)

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