OPINION

The Internet Versus Democracy

NEW HAVEN – Plenty has been said, and rightfully so, about the violent insurrection at the US Capitol on January 6. Politicians are grappling with issues of legal and moral accountability. But the horrific events also touch on a critical contradiction of modern societies: the internet’s role as an instrument …

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Lockdown Couple Quarrel

The situation is threatening the longevity of marriage By KENCHO WANGDI (BONZ) Like most couple quarrels, it started innocently enough, amiable even, with laughter from both sides, laughter that suddenly froze and the words came out sharp and flat and stinging. And so it was that last Friday a friend …

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Trump’s Götterdämmerung

NEW YORK – Anyone who was surprised by the mayhem in Washington, DC has not been paying attention for the last four years. The grotesque scenes around the Capitol on January 6 were indeed shocking: wild-eyed thugs with neo-Nazi flags and Trump banners smashing their way into the House of …

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Whose Post-Pandemic Century?

LONDON – In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, it was common to divide countries and their responses according to their political systems, with many attributing China’s success in controlling the virus to its authoritarianism. As of late 2020, however, it is clear that the real dividing line is …

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Can Poor Countries Avoid a Vaccine Bidding War?

WASHINGTON, DC – The world has received the best possible gift for the coming year. The development of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines in such a short time is something close to a medical miracle and portends an end to the crisis that dominated 2020. But the pace at which …

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The Buddhist View on LGBTQ and Smoking

A LOT has been said, is being said, about how Buddhists perceive LGBTQ and smoking. The debate was reignited after Bhutan temporarily lifted its infamous smoke ban during the Covid-19 national lockdown. With Bhutan becoming the newest country to decriminalize homosexuality, the debate has expanded. The conclusion from the Western …

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Opposition’s Assessment of Govt’s 2nd year in office

Economy This year the economy is projected to nosedive to between negative 2 to 6 percent growth rate. It makes the worst performance in our economic history. The shrinking fiscal space because of a hefty ‘debt burden’ of Nu.28 billion in the last two years will be a stumbling block …

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Designing Vaccines for People, Not Profits

LONDON – Recent announcements of demonstrated efficacy in COVID-19 vaccine trials have brought hope that a return to normality is in sight. The preliminary data for Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna’s novel mRNA vaccines are highly encouraging, suggesting that their approval for emergency use is forthcoming. And more recent news of effectiveness (albeit …

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The Global South’s Pandemic Path to Self-Reliance

MELBOURNE – COVID-19 continues to have a devastating impact on public health and to rattle the global economy with structural shocks. The pandemic has now killed more than one million people, while the International Monetary Fund estimates that global GDP will shrink by 4.4% in 2020. But, strange as it may seem, the current …

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Vaccine Apartheid

NEW DELHI – The American pharmaceutical company Pfizer and Germany’s BioNTech have announced that the COVID-19 vaccine they are jointly developing was more than 90% effective in early clinical trials. The news raised hopes around the world that life may soon return to pre-pandemic normal. Those hopes may not last long. The …

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