Can Confucianism save the world?

Can Confucianism save the world?

Sunday, May 25, 2014 – 03:00

Joseph Chan

The Straits Times

Confucianism needs saving because it is a very old tradition of thought that can no longer speak effectively to the modern world without systematic reconstruction.

Confucianism also needs saving because of the chronic gap between its political ideals and the reality of societal circumstances. But to save Confucianism and to let it save the world, we must first learn from its profound insights – and its profound failures. Read more of this post

Forget apps, old-school mobiles ring in a comeback

Forget apps, old-school mobiles ring in a comeback

Sunday, May 25, 2014 – 12:34


PARIS – They fit in a pocket, have batteries that last all week and are almost indestructible: old-school Nokias, Ericssons and Motorolas are making a comeback as consumers tired of fragile and overly-wired smartphones go retro.

Forget apps, video calls and smiley faces, handsets like the Nokia 3310 or the Motorola StarTec 130 allows just basic text messaging and phone calls. Read more of this post

The family that runs home- grown Singapore coffee manufacturer Boncafe International is selling the business to one of the world’s top coffee firms Massimo Zanetti/Segafredo for US$85 million (S$106 million)

Family selling Boncafe to Italian firm


Sunday, May 25, 2014

Rachael Boon

The Straits Times

The family that runs home- grown coffee manufacturer Boncafe International is selling the business to one of the world’s top coffee firms for US$85 million (S$106 million). Read more of this post

A bitter pill as China crackdowns squeeze pharma margins

A bitter pill as China crackdowns squeeze pharma margins

Sat, May 24 2014

By Adam Jourdan

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – A crackdown on corruption and pricing in China’s fast-growing pharmaceutical market has squeezed profits and margins, raising a red flag to global Big Pharma that the days of easy growth in the country may be over. Read more of this post

Thai military tightens grip, focuses on economic woes

Thai military tightens grip, focuses on economic woes

12:53am EDT

By Khettiya Jittapong and Paul Mooney

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand’s military tightened its grip on power on Sunday as it moved to douse smoldering protests fuelled by social media and rally commercial agencies and business to revitalize the country’s battered economy. Read more of this post

The Mysterious Origins Of The Swastika

The Mysterious Origins Of The Swastika


I found this 1917 advertisement for swastika jewelry while browsing through the NY Public Library Digital Gallery. The text reads in part:

To the wearer of swastika will come from the four winds of heaven good luck, long life and prosperity. The swastika is the oldest cross, and the oldest symbol in the world. Of unknown origin, in frequent use in the prehistoric items, it historically first appeared on coins as early as the year 315 B.C.

As this suggests, while the symbol of the swastika is most frequently associated with Hitler and Nazis during World War II, and is still used by neo-Nazi groups, the symbol itself has a much longer history. From wikipedia:

Archaeological evidence of swastika-shaped ornaments dates from the Neolithic period. An ancient symbol, it occurs mainly in the cultures that are in modern day India and the surrounding area, sometimes as a geometrical motif and sometimes as a religious symbol. It was long widely used in major world religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism.

Before it was co-opted by the Nazis, the swastika decorated all kinds of things. Uni Watch has tons of examples. Here it is on a Finnish military plane:

Boy Scout badge:

A women’s hockey team called the Swastikas from Edmonton (from 1916):

Another hockey team:In the comments, Felicity pointed to this example:

She writes:

My mom is a quilter and collects antique quilts (when she can afford them). She says that while in general, antique quilts and quilt-tops have gone up a great deal in price over the decades, there’s still one sort you can pick up for a song — swastika quilts. Read more of this post

As Publishers Fight Amazon, Books Vanish

As Publishers Fight Amazon, Books Vanish


MAY 23, 2014 7:24 AM 560 Comments

Amazon’s power over the publishing and bookselling industries is unrivaled in the modern era. Now it has started wielding its might in a more brazen way than ever before. Read more of this post

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