Since 1989


China is an authoritarian, in some ways totalitarian, nation-state. But we need to keep the larger perspective in mind as well.

Judge a society by how the odds are for the least of them.

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70 Replies to “Since 1989”

  1. Pretty sure Bangladesh will soon leap frog India ( unless real democracy 😜 stops Bangladesh in its tracks ) That would be the final victory of the “Chinese model”

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    1. Razib, great graphic for people who don’t know. India and Bangladesh have made stunning progress since 2016 too.

      Saurav, for a variety of reasons that I don’t want to elaborate on here India is likely to grow faster per capita over the medium and long run than Bangladesh–unless Bangladesh makes major reforms. This might be the subject of a future article:

      https://www.brownpundits.com/2019/01/13/bangladesh-economy-and-politics-in-imbalance/

      You can see my comments below Shafiq’s very well written post.

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      1. India has a lot of low-hanging fruit in BIMARU, but other than that I can’t see is beating the Bang long-term.

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        1. long-term we’re all dead.

          also, bangladesh is really just a large indian state. so the comparison is not apt.

          the southern states serious possibilities moving up service value chains, though that might not help BIMARU.

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    1. “lots of chinese in bangladesh now. not too many white ppl”
      True dat!

      My hope is that Bangladesh fully economically integrates into India. This would further empower West Bengal–which is in the middle of an economic miracle. Many Bengalis (muslim and nonmuslim) are now part of the BJP led coalition’s base. The BJP has excellent relations with Bangladesh’s government.

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        1. 1)

          Xerxes the Magian, global warming is unlikely to have as big an affect on Bangladesh as you fear. Agree with Razib on this.

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          2)

          “shafiq seems to be a bit more optimistic than that take now. ”

          I was more optimistic than Shafiq at the time and remain so. I think Sheikh Hasina is committed to resisting Islamism and neoliberal free market reforms. She is not a post modernist cultural marxist at heart.

          Indian Bengalis and Bengalis who do not live in India or Bangladesh are also more optimistic. This is obvious in discussions with Indian Bengalis who want to do more business with Bangladeshis or travel to Bangladesh. Security in Bangladesh is improving.

          Bangladesh has significant challenges with respect to medium and long term GDP growth in part because Bangladesh lacks a large high quality elite post 12th standard education system. This poses major long term challenges with AI and neuroscience advances. Bangladesh is also over dependent on textiles and agriculture. Bangladesh also lacks India’s freedom of art and thought.

          “from what shafiq said that’s on india with its tarrifs. bdesh has had OK marks as being a free-trading economy last i checked.”

          Shafiq is completely correct about Indian tariffs and non tariff trade barriers. If anyone can change this, it is Modi and his super majority. It is long past time India fully embraced Bangladesh. This involves:
          —free trade
          —free investment
          —free cross border product development collaboration
          —cross border educational institution collaboration
          —liberalizing tourism, religious travel, business travel, education visas, work visas [albeit not open borders]
          —India surging the capacity of Bangladeshi governance, education systems, Bangladeshi security forces, Bangladeshi intelligence forces

          Bangladesh is similar in many ways to a large Indian state. Sheikh Hasina “IS” pro business and free market. But overall Bangladesh is less so than India. This needs far more detailed elaboration.

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          3)

          Note that in West Bengal a large percentage of muslims likely voted for the BJP or the BJP’s allies. To reproduce a comment posted earlier about the muslim West Bengal vote:


          https://theprint.in/opinion/muslim-vote/bjp-is-emerging-as-second-most-preferred-political-choice-for-muslim-voters-in-india/225041/

          This suggests that 26% of muslims support the BJP and 56% oppose the BJP. 18% refuse to state. {My suspicion is that most of these 18% back the BJP}

          Review the state by state muslim vote breakdown clubbing Congress + Congress Allies + Left together. Most of the rest are BJP or likely to ally with BJP (for example BSP):
          UP Congress + Allies + Left = 26%
          Telangala ” = 65%
          West Bengal ” = 15%
          Rajasthan ” = 57%
          Maharashtra ” = 67%
          Kerela ” = 78%
          Karnataka ” = 69%
          Gujarat ” = 72%
          Bihar ” = 72%
          Assam ” = 99%

          I don’t know the sample sizes or how representative the state level data is.

          The BJP alliance’s strong showing with Bengali muslims suggests that many Bangladeshi origin voters voted for the BJP and her allies. In addition the BJP and Sheikh Hasina really like each other.

          This opens opportunities for collaboration between India and Bangladesh.
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          4)

          Can everyone please be nice to Scorpian Eater 🙂

          Scorpian eater, I have not seen the most recent Bangladeshi public opinion polls. Have you? I thought Sheikh Hasina was still pretty popular and would have won big, albeit with a smaller margin, if the last election did not have irregularities. Am I incorrect?

          Sheikh Hasina is respected and popular anecdotally in West Bengal and among Bengalis who do not live in India or Bangladesh. I don’t think non Bengali Indians know about or care about Bangladesh or Sheikh Hasina.

          Not saying she has not lost some legitimacy. But doesn’t she remain generally respected and popular?

          I don’t think Islamists will find Bengali muslims fertile soil for many reasons I don’t wish to elaborate on.

          “(conditional on talking to shafiq who indicates ppl don’t care much about politics in bangladesh right now)”

          I would agree with this.

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          5)

          Hindi is growing in West Bengal. But still mostly in Calcutta based on my limited observations.

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          6)

          “From my experience in America, Bengali identity is entirely carried by Bangladeshis. Any Bengali cultural event featuring food, dance, or dress is run by Bangladeshis. Most people aren’t even aware that a “West-Bengal” exists.”

          Wow. Simply wow. Is this a spoof?

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  2. Would have been nice to see Sri Lanka in the mix, best performing South Asian country by far.

    It performs well even relative to the best Indian states on many indicators.

    They are doing something right.

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    1. And that too with half of their Independent time with Civil war type situation. Imagine what could have happened without all those wars.

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  3. Bangladesh has a history of political violence. Even its military coups have been much more bloodier and messier than the orderly coups of pak.

    Sheikh Hasina might be doing a fine job economically, but she has lost political legitimacy after recent elections. Whatever be the truth, a perception exists that she won the election thru fraudulent means.

    What is troublesome in this scenario is that her opposition includes Islamist parties. Any opposition to her will aquire fundamentalist colors.

    I wish Bdesh well, but I am pessimistic about its immediate prospects.

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  4. but she has lost political legitimacy after recent elections.

    seems plausible, but who the fuck are you to say? are you bangladeshi? or just a typical bullshitter on this website?

    (conditional on talking to shafiq who indicates ppl don’t care much about politics in bangladesh right now)

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  5. “seems plausible, but who the fuck are you to say?”

    I am the so called “international community”, whatever weight its opinion might carry.

    Let me be a bit more blunt in my opinion. I do not expect sheikh hasina to finish her term.

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  6. I don’t think hasina would be stooped from completing her term. At least not from external pressures. Almost all her neighbors are positively disposed towards her. The west has in her the few democratic anti – Islamist prime minister. Also her conduct to the rohingya crisis is admirable, so tick marks on human rights front wala folks.

    No one would like rock the boat specially considering what the opposition would bring. Yes some protest regarding democracy , bloggers et all will be there. But more or less steady.

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  7. I have opinion on every conceivable topic ranging from ultimate fate of universe, to the future of free market capitalism, to the Hutu-Tutsi relations. Sorry if it bothers some people.

    Regarding B’desh, I expect a rise in Islamic fundamentalism in near future. The reason is for many decades after its independence B’desh was a basket case. Its people didn’t have any time to think beyond simply trying to stay alive. But now with rising prosperity, a need for identity will arise. This need will necessitate an assertion of Islamic identity, in order to differentiate B’desh from India/W-Bengal.

    I expect a contrary trend in Pak. I expect political Islam to cede some ground in immediate future. I think belatedly a realization has come in Pak that years of Islamic fundamentalism has kept it back. There will be some correction to this trend.

    Long term, all bets are off. Who can predict what the world will look like 30 years later.

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    1. This need will necessitate an assertion of Islamic identity, in order to differentiate B’desh from India/W-Bengal.

      ? what? who cares about that? it’s a separate country. india doesn’t want to absorb it and bdesh doesn’t want to be absorbed.

      urbanization/modernization will probably result in greater secularization AND islamicization. reduction in ‘traditional islam’ is what will happen.

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    2. “But now with rising prosperity, a need for identity will arise. This need will necessitate an assertion of Islamic identity, in order to differentiate B’desh from India/W-Bengal.”

      Hope this doesn’t happen, but reads very convincing (even Pak part sounds about right). Plus the Bengali style of politics can be raw and coarse- my experience is from WB but from everything I have read, extrapolates well to BD.

      “I have opinion on every conceivable topic ranging from ultimate fate of universe, to the future of free market capitalism, to the Hutu-Tutsi relations. ”

      Did you miss including crypto? #Likewise

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  8. But now with rising prosperity, a need for identity will arise. This need will necessitate an assertion of Islamic identity, in order to differentiate B’desh from India/W-Bengal.

    also, no one in bdesh speaks hindi in politics. bengali provides the clear identity, especially with the rise of hindi in west bengal.

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    1. AFAIK, most every WB Bengali can speak a smattering of and understand Hindi, but only 5-10% are fluent. Don’t think this has changed much recently. Bengalis in WB are too proud of their heritage to let this change. Besides, there is a faultline in WB, esp. Calcutta, between the educated and intellectual but very middle class Bongs vs. the industrialist-businessmen, filthy rich Hindi-speaking Marwaris. Have seen Mamata subtly allude to and exploit this, against the tide of BJP. There is also a dynamic with the much poorer Biharis that pack Cal, but they are less threatening.

      Also in my experience, there are significant cultural links b/w WB & BD- they read many of the same literary mags, listen to same music troupes & rock bands etc, but as an outsider, not sure how deep this is, may just be a small urban phenomenon. This could potentially mitigate the process Scorpion mentions. (Even as a non-Bong, got into several BD bands those many years ago, which were a thing in Cal).

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      1. “here is a faultline in WB, esp. Calcutta, between the educated and intellectual but very middle class Bongs vs. the industrialist-businessmen, filthy rich Hindi-speaking Marwaris. ”

        LOL. That reminds me of a bong girl (who regularly shits on marwadis) on twitter who feels the left is a (Bengali) Hindu party, while the BJP is a (Marwadi) Jihadi party. Go figure.

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        1. “That reminds me of a bong girl (who regularly shits on marwadis) on twitter who feels the left is a (Bengali) Hindu party, while the BJP is a (Marwadi) Jihadi party.”

          If we are thinking of the same lady (Hindu-traditionalist, anti-Muslim/jihadi but also anti-RSS/BJP), she is of course an extremist but she also has a point about some / many Marwaris in Cal not picking up fluent Bengali despite being born there.

          As outsider, was a Bong culture aficionado in Cal and fluent in a couple of years. And surprised me that all my Hindi-belt friends were dismissive. Including folks born in WB who could still not enunciate the Bengali “o” and persisted with “a” (when speaking Bengali and using shared Bong-Hindi words).

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          1. LOL, Yeah the same lady. I was just thinking the mental gymnastics one has to got to think the left as more “Hindu” then the BJP. Pretty sure the most left-ist person in India wouldn’t claim that.

            ” And surprised me that all my Hindi-belt friends were dismissive.”

            I think its just familiarity breed contempt issue. They live there so perhaps they aren’t that starry eyed about the whole “Bengali culture is best” type of thing. Just guessing.

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  9. Yeah i am more on Razib on this. Bangladesh has “enough” separate identity (From India) and it Bengali identity is strong enough to not want a different identity, which is something Pakistan in that way didn’t have.

    Pakistan identity was too similar to N-Indian identity, which by sheer numbers also provided the bulk of India’s identity. That’s why Pakistan had no other option but to change. Bangladesh has no such issue considering Bengali has very little on India’s identity as a whole. In a way they could take the mantle of “Real Bengal” and i wont think India would object (on a union level)

    But yes, yearn for a bigger identity bigger (Islamic Ummah) than your current identity could be the pull which could happen.

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  10. bengali is written in bengali script. that means there’s a common literary language. bdesh ppl and west bengalis feel common cultural affinities in alien lands (though some hindu bengali readers have said this doesn’t exist, perhaps it’s a one-way aversion?).

    as is clear to any non-idiot, pakistan needs islam as a binding identity. urdu doesn’t do it since it’s a minority language. in contrast, 98% of bangladeshis speak bengali or related dialect, and the literary high culture draws from the bengal renaissance, but has been kept alive and vital in a nation-state which exists in a european sense.

    scorpion is definitely a bullshitter when he goes on about how bangladesh will need islam for an identity. what idiot can’t see there’s one nation in south asia that resembles a european language-based nation-state? its foundation was based on language (albeit as a proxy for cultural/regional separatism).

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    1. I wanted to disengage, but since you insist…

      B’desh is not European style nation state. Half the Bengali speaking population lives outside its borders (ok, may be less than half, but these are just details). Cultural capital of Bengal (Calcutta) lies outside its borders.

      Just after a couple of years following independence, B’desh changed the definition of its citizens from “Bengali” to “Bangladeshi”. The need to differentiate it from W Bengal was apparent early on.

      There are writings available on Internet where pro-Pak B’deshis bemoan the fact that had they not seceded from Pak they would have been a nuclear power today. It sounds funny to identify with one’s oppressor’s martial power, but it is true. So obviously an urge to connect to larger Muslim world is present under the surface.

      Recent rise of Hindutva politics in W Bengal can’t help. There has to be a reaction in B’desh.

      I guess the reason B’desh has not hurtled full speed towards Islamic fundamentalism is because the genocide it suffered during independence war was carried out in the name of Islam. That sobers up people a bit. But with time, memories will fade.

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      1. B’desh is not European style nation state. Half the Bengali speaking population lives outside its borders (ok, may be less than half, but these are just details). Cultural capital of Bengal (Calcutta) lies outside its borders.

        hey dumbass, have you heard about germany? are you aware that the ‘little germany’ was the core of the nation-state, and did not include majority or mostly german-speaking nations like austria and switzerland?

        B’desh changed the definition of its citizens from “Bengali” to “Bangladeshi”.

        ppl from bangladesh switch freely between the terms. i know, because my family is from bangladesh.

        There are writings available on Internet where pro-Pak B’deshis bemoan the fact that had they not seceded from Pak they would have been a nuclear power today.

        wow, people on the internet! you are such a diligent researcher!

        the pro-pak bangladeshis tended to be older. my maternal grandfather was one. he was born in 1896 and was a muslim professional at a time when hindu bhadrolok dominated his field (medicine). so he was suspicious of the secular rebels, amongst whom some hindus were quite prominent (there was a mini cult-of-mujib among hindus because of the genocidal behavior of the pak army).

        I guess the reason B’desh has not hurtled full speed towards Islamic fundamentalism is because the genocide it suffered

        are you a dumbass or do you pretend to just be one?

        the national anthem is by a hindu. and to *some extent* the criticisms of bengali muslims as semi-hindu aren’t totally far off (the sari-wearing persists).

        hoping all your comments aren’t stream-of-bullshit.

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      2. “I guess the reason B’desh has not hurtled full speed towards Islamic fundamentalism is because the genocide it suffered during independence war was carried…”

        Also, Bangladesh- unlike many Islamic nations- has always had edgy, even incendiary, atheist-rationalist groups and movements. Yes, there has been deadly backlash but still very much alive.

        In that, from a distance, young folk in BD have struck me much like in WB and will be the bulwark against extremism. But if there is the predicted rise of BJP in WB, hard to say how it affects the WB-BD cultural dynamic. Maybe the elites will still be connected, or maybe it won’t matter at all.

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    2. From my experience in America, Bengali identity is entirely carried by Bangladeshis. Any Bengali cultural event featuring food, dance, or dress is run by Bangladeshis. Most people aren’t even aware that a “West-Bengal” exists.

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      1. “From my experience in America, Bengali identity is entirely carried by Bangladeshis. Any Bengali cultural event featuring food, dance, or dress is run by Bangladeshis. Most people aren’t even aware that a “West-Bengal” exists.”

        Showed this comment to a Bong Hindu friend who lives in California (PhD in Chicago, Post Doc in SF).

        He laughed at it. His hypothesis is that since most Bengali restaurants there are run by Bangladeshis, your exposure might be limited to those people.

        Durga Puja (Pujo) is the biggest Bengali event of the year and it is entirely run, obviously, by Bengali Hindus.

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        1. I understand where Indthings is coming from. I think perhaps Indian Bengali divide their time both with Bong stuff as well as hang out with other Indian folks to do do “Indian” stuff , they sort of are seen as part of the larger “Indian” community by the Americans. While Bangladeshi do mostly Bong stuff so they are seen as more “authentic” and all.

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  11. From my experience in America, Bengali identity is entirely carried by Bangladeshis. Any Bengali cultural event featuring food, dance, or dress is run by Bangladeshis. Most people aren’t even aware that a “West-Bengal” exists.

    but you are from a muslim background right? so of course you’d be aware of the bdeshi ones.

    from what i understand west bengalis have their own events, often around durga puja and what not.

    the bengali community in the 1980s that my parents were part of had some separation btwn west bengal and bdesh ppl, but it was semi-permeable. my parents socialized with bengalis (indian and bdesh) and pakistanis. through the west bengalis they met some orissa ppl too.

    now that there are more bangladeshis in t he USA there is less mixing.

    that being said, when secularization happens, the mixing in later generations occurs again. i have pretty good, if superficial, commentary with all the bhadrolokh bongcommies. their economics is crap, but at least they got culture.

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  12. There appears to be many Bangladeshi singers who are appreciated in india. eg. nilufa yasmin. this trend will certainly increase.
    with improved relations and constant flow of indian hindu bengalis visiting their temples in bangladesh, will soften things up.

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        1. She had a couple of well-crafted ones in IOM but overall, was underwhelmed…esp. given the Pulitzer buzz then. Think Pulitzer wanted their own Arundhati Roy, given Roy had just rocked the literary world with her huge Booker win with GOST…

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  13. @razib

    5% of b’deshis vote for overtly islamist party like jammat-e-islami in every election. More sympathize with it, but they probably vote for BNP because of its more electability.

    hindu population numbers in b’desh are steadily declining, even during the years of its economic turnaround. obviously some background islamist pressure exists for them to migrate.

    facts don’t lie. If you still think that a subcurrent of pro-islam political view doesn’t exist, then either you are being naive (i doubt), or intellectually dishonest (more likely).

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    1. hindu population numbers in b’desh are steadily declining

      Typo. change that to hindu ratio of population.

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      1. How does increase in Hindu numbers, even if decrease in proportion indicate outward migration pressure by Islamists?

        Seems like bad argument and on discovering, post-hoc rationalization?

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        1. Would like to make a nuance point. I think Bangladeshis dont see themselves as being more religious as different from Bengali-ness. So we might be misconstruing conservative-ness or even Islamist tendencies as rejection of Bengali values. That is not how it works. If you ask a gujrati hindu, he wont’ see identifying himself as Gujarati or as a Hindu (only) as diametrically opposite identity. It could even happen that both identities even re-inforces each other.

          That;s why even Hasina sort of hob nobs with some religious/conservative elements. The only real divide is see in B-desh society in that sense is Liberation war supporters and opponents. Even BNP (religious) supporters could be on Liberation war fighters side against the Jammat.

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          1. Not an expert nor Bengali, still Bengal has the strongest requisite mix among all Indian states for its own nationalism IMHO . TN really doesn’t have that, despite historical issues.

            Bengali nationalism was neatly subsumed into the larger Indian one turn of twentieth century because “What Bengal thinks today, India thinks tomorrow” held things in check. The world has transformed since then, and the absent economic or cultural-intellectual heft it once possessed and a possibly imminent Hindi-belt invasion with the BJP could revive dormant faultlines (Saurav has long since ceased captaining India, so even that buffer is lost).

            Won’t happen anytime soon, but wouldn’t be very surprised if we started hearing murmurs. Most interesting has been when “Hindutva vs Bengali” erupts among even conventional Modi supporters, the Bengali part takes precedence more often than not.

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          2. “Bengal has the strongest requisite mix among all Indian states for its own nationalism IMHO ”

            I feel all ethnicity have that dormant strain which when activated can become nationalism in their own right. For example what doesn’t Marathi have which Bengal has? Same degree of depth in culture, language etc. Add to it , it has money which Bengal doesnt. Still it is realtivly more at ease with “India” than let say Tamil/Bengali are. So can’t frankly say what leads to what.

            “Most interesting has been when “Hindutva vs Bengali” erupts among even conventional Modi supporters, the Bengali part takes precedence more often than not.”

            Agree. The way i see it Bengalis are Bengalis first and foremost unlike other ethnicity of the North. Whether they are from the left or the right, it doesn’t matter. Fore example. the lady we were discussing ,some time back was supporting “Michael” Dutt book Meghnad which actually portrays Ram as villian. So we all know where the pendulum rests when it comes to Bengali folks 😛

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          3. “For example what doesn’t Marathi have which Bengal has?”

            The certainty.
            The certainty they are superior 🙂

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    2. facts don’t lie. If you still think that a subcurrent of pro-islam political view doesn’t exist, then either you are being naive (i doubt), or intellectually dishonest (more likely).

      i have come to conclude you just have a low IQ (Ok, perhaps average, 100ish?).

      you just throw a bunch of random facts/assertions out there and declare “there i proved my stupid superficial vapid point!”

      you also do a lot of mind-reading (“bangladeshis think”) and imputing (“here is a refutation of a point you didn’t make!”).

      this blog is getting too popular ;-(

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      1. “i have come to conclude you just have a low IQ (Ok, perhaps average, 100ish?).”

        LoL. I wonder why do Americans have so much fetish for IQ. Look at Trump. In every argument he will insert a reference to IQ somewhere. A common joke about IQ is that high IQ is good only for scoring high scores in IQ tests.

        Trotsky probably had higher IQ than Stalin. Trotsky ended up with an axe in his skull. Stalin ruled like a czar for 3 decades.

        If you are a history buff, you should know that doers make this world, not thinkers.

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    3. obviously some background islamist pressure exists for them to migrate.

      it’s not background islamist pressure dumbass. it’s casual and pervasive prejudice against hindus. hindus in bangladesh experience a lot of casual discrimination from secular muslim bangladeshis. this is bad.

      BUT, it is also different from being an islamist.

      look at indthings, whether he is sincere or not he can channel the antihindu biases of his background easily despite his secularity.

      the lack of this ability to conceive of nuance is indicative of lower IQ.

      hindus can be antimuslim even if they are atheist.

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      1. I don’t think INDTHINGS has said a single nice thing about Hinduism in the time I’ve known him.

        Wrt myself, I have admitted on Twitter to possessing anti-Catholic leanings, primarily because both of us are coming from a Western scientific-rational milieu, and Catholicism positions itself against that.* Eg: Catholics tend to adhere to the outmoded bioethical view of vitalism, that life should be prolonged at any or all costs.

        For me, this comes up in the context of trying to get Catholic families to transition their loved ones to DNR and hospice. My (also Catholic) program director jokingly calls this “selling death,” and he is very annoyed that Catholic churches promote vitalism.

        I’d say I have the same general standoffishness towards Islam that most Hindus have. I don’t know or care very much about Islam, but I don’t disdain it the way I do Catholicism.

        *To a degree of course. I know many Catholics who are men of science par excellence.

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        1. This is such weird line of reasoning I do not even know where to begin!

          Must be a resident thing.

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          1. You’ll have to explain why you think it’s “weird.” I gave a very standard bioethical issue that the Catholic and scientific-rational positions diverge on. Obviously I come from the latter and take a dim view of the former.

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          2. implicit anticatholicism is common. it’s part of the protestant heritage.

            it’s like when matt damon said the only time a sequel was better than the original was the new testament vs. old testament. damon’s not antijewish. he’s just from a christian milieu.

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          3. Razib might be right…I’ve just realized I view Catholicism more negatively than I view Mormonism, even though the latter is probably the more intransigent faith.

            Perhaps it is because Catholics are an outgroup and Mormons a fargroup for us?

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      2. “it’s not background islamist pressure dumbass. it’s casual and pervasive prejudice against hindus. hindus in bangladesh experience a lot of casual discrimination from secular muslim bangladeshis. this is bad.

        BUT, it is also different from being an islamist.”

        Ah, that explains it. Now I know you are not being intellectually dishonest. You are plain dumb.

        The nuance you are pointing out is just a figment of your imagination. This is classic Jinnah/cultural-muslim delusion. (This is also pretty close to your bete noir Kabir’s worldview). If a prejudice against Hindus exists, then it arises out of subconscious superiority complex rooted in a supposedly superior religion. Sooner or later it will find expression in overtly islamicized politics.

        In the case of Pak they feebly tried to hinge their otherness on to secular factors (scions of supposedly foreign martial races, fairer skin, and other such bullshit). Even then it didn’t really work and couldn’t stop Pak inexorable slide towards Islamic fundamentalism. None of these factors are applicable in the case of B’desh. Officially-secular-but-culturally-muslim tightrope is nearly impossible to walk in muslim majority countries.

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        1. Officially-secular-but-culturally-muslim tightrope is nearly impossible to walk in muslim majority countries.

          you are as knowledgeable as the typical internet-hindu.

          not sure you are as dumb as kabir. i think you guys are both in the 100 to 115 IQ range…which is the worst.

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          1. “not sure you are as dumb as kabir. i think you guys are both in the 100 to 115 IQ range…which is the worst.”

            Love it. 🙂 I gave you +1 just for this. I really did.

            In all the IQ tests I have taken, I have always scored very high on visuospatial section. What this means is that I am very good at mentally rotating 3-D objects, and figuring out how they would look from different angles.

            So far this is the only use I have found for IQ. Sometimes when I am bored, I rotate random 3-D objects in my mind to amuse myself. At other times I read this blog…

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  14. Judge a society by how the odds are for the least of them.

    Sounds positively Rawlsian (from someone who has only read about, not actually read, Rawls).

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  15. Final argument – Bangladesh exists as a separate state because Bangladesh is Muslim. It might have taken a somewhat circuitous route to end up as a separate nation, but nobody can deny that it exists separately because of its Muslim character. Had E Bengal been a majority Hindu land, B’desh wouldn’t have existed.

    Anyone denying the underlying islamic/islamist/pan-islamic (call it whatever) sentiment of B’deshi population does it at their own peril.

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    1. Bangladesh exists as a separate state because Bangladesh is Muslim.

      It existed separate from India also as East Pakistan.
      All that bloodshed for a new name and national anthem 😮

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    2. If E. Bengal had been Hindu we may well have seen an independent Greater Bengal..

      We forget how much Hindi, Hindu, Hindustan actually depends on Urdu, Muslim, Pakistan..

      The two nationalisms are profoundly symbiotic

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  16. Well do agree with your second part but not with your ” E. Bengal had been Hindu we may well have seen an independent Greater Bengal.”

    Tamil is even less “Hindi, Hindu, Hindustan” than Bengal. It;s still with India

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