Tag Archives: Manu Joseph

Manu Joseph Quits The Open Magazine

erectile-dysfunction-linked-to-heart-risk-L-b8lKYFHehe. I heard that Manu Joseph resigned from the Open Magazine. I am just hoping that Anu is not crying because Manu was kicked out. This boy will pray for her. Evolutionary psychologists observe that married men tend to have erectile dysfunction when this happens.

I still love these blog posts of mine:

A Confederacy of Dunces

The Hilarious Case Of Manu Joseph

Dial 100

Post Script: But, I understand that editors have to do such bad things and take kicks from their bosses to keep their jobs, to provide for their families. I appreciate that. But, as a side note, I will just say that a Magazine paid me only when its female staff read a status update of mine: “Will the editors who leak drafts send in their mothers to their bosses, to keep their jobs?” That did it for them. I refuse to tell you which Magazine this is. People have to feel bad only if they think that this is true of them.

But, I Did Nothing Wrong

Years ago, when the then Harvard President lost his job for suggesting that the under-representation of women in science and engineering could be due to innate differences, the psychologist Steven Pinker said, “Good grief, shouldn’t everything be within the pale of legitimate academic discourse, as long as it is presented with some degree of rigor? That’s the difference between a university and a madrassa.” Any rigorously defended statement should be within the pale of acceptable discourse. It does not matter whether the university is private or public. This should be true of newspapers and magazines too, because it is reasonable to expect that the difference between a media house and a madrassa is not merely a matter of appearance.

On Twitter, many are arguing that Sanjeev Goenka was within his rights to terminate the service of Hartosh Singh Bal—that there is nothing wrong in a proprietor sacking an editor. Fair enough. An employer is not violating the rights of an employee when he fires him. But, that does not mean that firing someone in the intellectual professions for telling the truth is ethically defensible. People are idiots. They are missing many important truths.

1) When a proprietor fires a journalist for morally indefensible reasons, it is an ethical compromise, even if it is true that he is within his rights to do so. We look down on the people who are ruled by their egos and insecurities. We look down on people who are more interested in money, power and positions than the truth, rightly so. Even if it is true that the proprietor has the right to do whatever he likes to do with his resources, people are fully within their rights to condemn such behavior. Continue reading

And Then He Made Something Glorious Out Of It

hqdefaultI am feeling a little shy to admit that I love that the editors at the Open Magazine are fighting each other. This is what Manu Joseph said in an interview with The Hoot:

He was asked to fire Hartosh Singh Bal, and find another political editor for the Magazine, but he resisted the temptation for three years. Then he fired him because he wanted to improve his relationship with his boss. When he fired Hartosh, he did not give any reason because he was against the decision. They wanted this to be a convenient deal for everyone concerned, and the 15-lakh compensation was part of it. Hartosh wanted more. The Open Magazine could not afford more. Therefore, he came open about this.

Juicy bits:

“I had to make a decision. One option I had was to relent and rebuild my relationship with the owner so that I can push through an ambitious online plan for the magazine. Quitting was the easier option, which I had done thrice already in the past three years. I was totally opposed to the move. That is the reason the management had to proceed without an official reason. The facts are, as usual, less glorious. In the modern-day office, the principled stand usually leads to a point when the calculators come out. Money is a form of justice, so Hartosh and the HR had conversations. The HR offered Rs 15 lakhs, Hartosh wanted much more. Things didn’t work out. No journalist who is fired has any reasons to go quietly these days if what he feels is his rightful financial compensation is not granted. Nobody was under any illusion that he will go quietly. Hartosh had several conversations about his post-departure moves with me. He told he will “raise hell”. I told him he should. I do not know about the legal position. It certainly is not moral or ethical.” Continue reading

Sexism:A Reading List

Don’t be a clown. Take women seriously.

“I know personally several couples where the wife is a militant liberationist and the husband has been brainwashed by his spouse to be an Uncle Tom and a traitor to his gender.  In all these cases, after a long hard day at the office or at teaching to support the family, the husband sits at home tending the kids while the wife is out at Women’s Lib meetings, there to plot their accession to total power and to denounce their husbands as sexist oppressors. Not content with the traditional mah-jongg set, the New Woman is reaching for the final castrating blow-to be accepted, I suppose, with meek gratitude by their male-liberal spouses. It has been noted for years-and especially by Europeans and Asians – that too many American men live in a matriarchy, dominated first by Momism, then by female teachers, and then by their wives.”-Murray Rothbard, Against Women’s Liberation

“The feminist critique started when some women systematically looked up at the top of society and saw men everywhere: most world rulers, presidents, prime ministers, most members of Congress and parliaments, most CEOs of major corporations, and so forth — these are mostly men. Seeing all this, the feminists thought, wow, men dominate everything, so society is set up to favor men. It must be great to be a man. The mistake in that way of thinking is to look only at the top. If one were to look downward to the bottom of society instead, one finds mostly men there too. Who’s in prison, all over the world, as criminals or political prisoners? The population on Death Row has never approached 51% female. Who’s homeless? Again, mostly men. Whom does society use for bad or dangerous jobs? US Department of Labor statistics report that 93% of the people killed on the job are men. Likewise, who gets killed in battle? Even in today’s American army, which has made much of integrating the sexes and putting women into combat, the risks aren’t equal. This year we passed the milestone of 3,000 deaths in Iraq, and of those, 2,938 were men, 62 were women.”-Roy F Baumeister, Is There Anything Good About Men? Continue reading

Mises On India

India is as hostile to the domestic accumulation of capital as it is to foreign capitalists.

My engineering mechanics lecturer loved to say that a picture is worth a thousand words. I never found this convincing.  Many think that economics is dry and boring, but they are surprised when they hear that there were great economists who never used a graph or a chart, and that their work was far more important than that of the large majority of the economists who used them.

The great 20th century economist Ludwig Von Mises never used a graph or a chart in any of his works. I was an instant convert to Mises’ worldview because the “Library of Economics and Liberty” described him as an economist who believed that all sorts of government interventions lead to harmful consequences. It just made a lot of sense to me. Mises believed that statistics is not economics, and cannot produce economic theorems. I too believed this with some strength of conviction in my late teens and early 20s, though I no longer think that empirical data is worthless.

It is easy to find fault with Mises’ anti-empirical stance, but as Bryan Caplan says, Mises’ take on democracy is sounder than standard public choice, not because he had more data, but because he paid attention to the date he had. He had no illusions about the virtues or wisdom of the common man.

Most Indians, for instance, might think that his views on India are silly, and that he does not really understand India: Continue reading