Sunday, August 31, 2014

Important to study other countries --

It is important to read about other similar countries, the PRC, the USSR, even N. Korea, to understand Burma/myanmar.

If you think you can understand Burma only by looking at Burma, then you are a fool.

This is the one great failing of area studies as opposed to systems studies.

And "advice" from you will never make the god forsaken place "work"--

you will only be an apologist for the status quo and a run around person, trying to tie all those disjointed bizarre things together--

in many cases they have no logic except to increase the power and holdings of the ruling class, and if you say "elite" another time, I will vomit.

They are not "elite"--they just happen to have power because as Mao said, "Power comes from the barrel of a gun."


PS--I am proud that under the curriculum designed by Dr Aye Hlaing, Dr Findlay and others, often under stress or duress, at the Inst. of Ecos 1962-1982 (I don't know about the years when I was not there)

courses on the PRC, Indian Eco. Planning, and the Soviet Union were taught--and I taught these courses after my mentors left.

I even remember talking about collectivization, famine, and even about Isreali kibbutzim (military/collective farms)--

I am not proud of "the Burmese mind"--it is often mired in minutia, the micro-economic, personality instead of policy driven, and a nasty grandstanding and own trumpet blowing--esp. among historians. 

It makes no sense to study history just to write historiography and present kings as ideals.

If they were, they would not have been colonized--think about Siam/Thailand.

Taksin (not the modern Taksin) made a great decision when he moved the capital from Ayuthia to Thonburi opposite the present Bangkok, after the last siege of Ayuthia by the Burmese (Hsinbyushin) in 1767.

In contrast, Burma remained inward looking and later landlocked.

You can believe what you want, this is what I see.

For instance, Genghis was successful for 3 generations because he was always incorporating elements that he conquered, such as siege warfare, or the Chinese administrative system.