Solitude has his own shapes
The shape of shadows, of desire
Of destiny
When life comes to a halt
All plans collapse
Solitude is a forced friend
When the thrill of the everyday
Abandons us
Then solitude tells me
I am time
Before ambitions overtook you
I was there
Like the shadow on the wall

Day 6 Field Notes

Day 6 Field notes from #21daylockdownindia in Devachi Uruli, Pune Rural. Almost all shops open including the only dhobi/laundry in the area who opens up when the cops are not around. Says his business is badly hit and was quite helpless, awaiting for normalcy to return.

In a comical turn of events, the Tapri which sells smokes is now shut and the Allahabad guy who runs it has turned to selling bananas.

India takes hardly anytime to normalise when the crisis, as everyday has echoes of the absurd which we all relate to. A Day in the life of India.

Global Pandemic versus Climate Change Response

The difference between climate change action and pandemic world war effort is located in the measurability of the crisis. Infections can be measured, and pointed interventions can be applied. Climate change to be tackled has to be local first and global later. We miss the elephant in the room, COVID-19 can inflect an Eastern European immigrant, who will be ‘asked to leave’ after Brexit as the British Prime Minister. In a climate change context, the habitus of the privileged wards them against the manifestations of climate change impacts. The virus cuts across privilege to a large extent, and the rich fear being sick. The corporate class fears the virus as it is leaving a carnage. The language has changed as McKinsey boss has called for a shift from the Just in Time Economy to the Resilience Economy. This itself is an epistemic shift.

The migrant worker in Delhi, is fearful of very little to lose, he does not have much to start with anyway. It is the wealthy and the middle class who will hit the hardest as economies contract, comfy jobs evaporate as companies look to avenues for revenues for a post pandemic era.

Singaporean Strategic Foresight

In the light of the resilience package announced today by Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat, Singapore redefines strategic foresight to a different level. Decades of planning is needed for the black swan event, and as a former NRF-CRP Scholar at NTU i can vouch for Singaporean exceptionalism from a close quarter. Planning on building capacity in healthcare decades back by attracting the best talent globally at A-STAR and medical schools such as Duke-NUS needs the firm leadership disconnected from negotiating daily demands of electoral politics where strategic spends are taken in right context.

Singapore is the regulatory sandbox for policy innovation, and this needs to be admired and feted when many countries lack decisive decision making due to deleterious polarized discourses. I would like to see no cardboard uncles and aunties as well, and Singapore being a generous polity can take care of this blemish.

As a non PR, FT (and very Sg-phile at heart)- i can feel the impact from miles away in Pune, India. I miss my 151 Bus rides. Majulah!