Sree Iyer: Hello and welcome to PGurus Channel. I’m your host Sree Iyer. Today is February the 10th 2021 and it is episode number 95. Sridharji, namaskar and welcome to PGurus Channel. Let us start from Trump’s impeachment sir. Where things are now? A lot of things happening from last night. Where do things stand now?
Sridhar Chityala: Namaskar and good morning to everybody. Where do things stand? I think it was on time on the dot, they kicked up the sessions on Tuesday at 1:00 p.m., yesterday. They had their four hours of debate and discussion led by the House impeachment managers and ably defended by the Trump lawyers. Each pitched their respective cases, as far as the Trump lawyers are concerned basically said, the whole process is unconstitutional, this is all about in a political kind of victimization, personal targeting and there is nothing in the speech that states that there was any violation of any constitutional issues and whether there was anything to do with insurrection, so they played the same videos that subsequently the Democrats kind of made their pitch. So, the Democrats then, in turn, the House impeachment lawyers made a persuasive case, which is to say whether its first year, the second year, the third year, the fourth year, the fifth year, it doesn’t matter. January has not exclusive month whether it is in the last day or the last month the Constitutional obligations of the president remains, he cannot invoke people against the state. So, they kind of are presented a version of the video which is contested by the Republicans. I’m sure the Democrats have their own kind of, views against the Republican video, but the facts are that people have to make their own kind of judgments. After these dramas were completed, they decided to vote, 44 Republicans voted against the impeachment. And 50 Democrats plus 6 Republicans decided to pursue the trial the six Republicans like Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins, Pat Toomey then, you have Mitt Romney and Sasse and the new member was Bill Cassidy from Louisiana. Louisiana Republican party, you know, which is a red state, they are very kind of vocal kind this morning in their rejection of bills, vote as well as his banter. He subsequently came out and said look at the two presentations, you know, I have to objectively make a decision between the two presentations. When I look at the presentation of the House impeachment managers versus the Trump’s lawyers, you know, they could have done a better job. So, I chose that but, that doesn’t mean that in the prosecution when he goes to the next phase, that he would be, a similar type of vote. So, I think that’s the event went according to the Parlays, there was a remote hope recognizing that this was a fait accompli whether the people would pursue this specific path, but unfortunately, we have left with no choice, but it’s going down. Today, at 12 o’clock or at 1 o’clock, the sessions kick-off, so that’s where we are and Patrick Leahy has said that he will conduct an objective trial and be fair to all the in President Trump seems to be satisfied with the way the procedures have been laid out and documented and enacted between Senator Chuck Schumer as well as Senator Mitch McConnell. So, that’s where we stand and the drama begins today.
Sree Iyer: And in other news those of you who may have read the PGurus article about the government of India asking Twitter to shut down 1178 handles, which he said was either promoting Khalistan or was being operated from Pakistan and other countries. What Twitter has come out is a very interesting response, and they did not officially reply back to the ministry of electronics in India, but they have put out a tweet in which they have said that we have turned these handles off for India, but, we believe in free expression that anybody who wants to say anything as long as that is within the realm of the laws of the country, should be allowed to say so, in fact, they specifically mentioned journalists and other such professions where they said that there is complete freedom of expression, what, however, one does not see is their own admission that there is something called as a shadow barren place where some are considered more than the others and yours truly the PGurus handle is also the victim of this. We have said this thing loudly many times, however, this continues to fall on deaf ears, whatever happens, this is not the end of it because the Indian government has come back and said, this is a very unusual way to respond to our request and we have to wait and see how that plays out. Sir, what are your thoughts?
Sridhar Chityala: My thoughts are I think Twitter and Facebook more Twitter playing to its true identity and a true colour namely highly subjective way of dealing with it. They have become a rule unto themselves. They use the same rule to their advantage or to their, what I call Strategic framework in which they use the same methodology against some of the handles where they basically use independent fact-checking or their own self believe that this handle has to be shut. There’s no way that you can have all these Republican people handles being shut. So, where is the freedom of expression? Where is the First Amendment? Where is the Second Amendment? So, because they recognize that they have Protections in the United States under 230 Amendment. So, therefore they can get away with it the only state which seems to be figuring out of the way, by which they can skirt around this and make them accountable, is Florida. When Florida does it, you may find other red States following suit, in my humble view, if you want to hold these companies to objectivity, the only way you can make them realize is punish them in the stock market. Make them punish, basically get out, don’t sponsor revenues and you will see that they will come down to a middle ground, where they will apply the same rules on either side of the fence. I don’t believe it’s going to happen to Twitter, because the way the Twitter is managed and organized and some of the composition of the people who make up the Twitter board and so on. I just don’t see this and I think the Indian government has done the right thing. It is moving forward with its own platform called Koo. I saw a quite a number of ministers coming on board, so, my view is the US will not be given, we have now a democratic administration, which seems some more favourable to this particular, notwithstanding they want Twitter to be accountable and Facebook to be accountable. I don’t believe they will take drastic action because many of the things seem to be to their advantage whereas India has adopted the right approach to it is no different to the approach that China has you can’t play these kinds of things in China, but you can do lots of things outside China. So, to that extent, the model is a reflection of what is already prevalent in the world today.
Sree Iyer: And viewers we might as well tell you that the PGuru’s is promoting our own version of a communicator software. It is in beta test. It’s called bother Vaad. It is available for Android right now, you can go to Google Play Store and download it. You can test the quality of it is more like a WhatsApp very secure in its communication and the way it fortifies all your communications. So we encourage you to try it we are deliberately playing it low profile because it is still under beta and we are testing it out. It’s been in beta for seven months now. And the reason for that is, this is serious business you need to make absolutely sure that the experience one gains from this software are a very pleasant one. So, those of you who have not already played on with it, please install it. It has an automatic translate feature that allows people to understand the tweets or the messages given in English in your own language, you can choose any of 140 languages including 14 Indian languages that you can go and change or set in the translation setting and then you will get the same messages in your mother tongue. So, having said that let’s move on we have a lot to cover in the global news. Sir, the most important thing that I see here is Beijing now is beginning to hint at how it wants to see the US-China relationship evolve under Biden Administration now, we’re also seeing that the US has put one more destroy, I think in the South China Sea and that too has a traversed the Taiwan strait. So, I think there is not much difference in terms of the approach between the Biden Administration and the outgoing or the previous Administration of Trump as far as Taiwan is concerned. What are you thought sir?
Sridhar Chityala: Well, I think right now, the rhetoric seems to match the intended actions that are taking place on the ground in the South China Sea and basically China continuing to ratchet up and then the United States has supported or backed its plans with Rafael Peralta now being in Yoko Shuko and that particular carrier fighter, the fleet will augment the existing fleet recognizing that China is the big boy in the South China Sea. What we need to recognize right now is that, as we step into the program, we are hearing that Russia, Iran, and China are going to conduct joint exercises in the Indian Ocean. This is a very new development that is why Russia and India have conducted exercises in the Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal. Russia and Pakistan have conducted exercises, China and Pakistan have conducted, now Iran coming into the waters to conduct an exercise makes interesting propositions to Biden’s policy where he said he is going to revalidate and re-evaluate all the arms sales that are going to be taking place and stuck in the middle of the two are the sales to UAE as well as Saudi Arabia, the F-35 planes. So I think the battlegrounds are drawn all the way from the Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean into the South China Sea and where there are flexing muscles. This is about geopolitics, whether Mr Biden is going to rise to the new challenge that is coming up. Clearly, with the South China Sea, he seems to be moving down the path treasured by I would assume Korea, Japan, and other ASEAN nations. So the way he needs to re-establish his connections. So we are in for very troubled times, as these Global Powers try to assert their positions. It is quite amazing that the number of trouble spots that have brewed up just on the exit of President Trump and just as President Biden is taking charge. All these days everybody kept quiet but now you are beginning to see these spurts of action that’s coming out. So the question therefore is, why?
Sree Iyer: Yes, absolutely right? We have to find out the answer to that and we will try and get you the answer in the days and weeks ahead. Moving on, the Intel minister of Iran has declared that they would have the nuclear capability very soon. So it’s basically reaffirming what the world has been thinking for the last few weeks. Let’s move on to covid and what has been happening on the covid scene. Sridharji, there appear to be two outliers, one on its control, effective control of covid and one on its control-less spurt of covid cases. The first one is India and the other one is the United States. Can we compare and contrast the two largest democracies on how they fared so far on their battle against covid?
Sridhar Chityala: Well, I think, as the covid virus begins to taper and flatten its curve, as we speak there are 107 million total cases and 2.35 or 2.3 million deaths and close to 17.9 million recoveries and about 25.5 million active cases around the world. Now, let’s compare this to the United States. The United States has 27.8 million total cases and of which roughly 480,000 deaths and 17.64 million cases recovered and then about 9.6 million active, but these numbers are staggering when you actually compare it with with the rest of the world and compare it to the total. So if you take 27.8 million out of rough 107 million, that’s pretty close to about just over 25-26%. So 26% of the global cases are in the United States. Second, 480,000 deaths against total death of 2.35 million roughly translate very close to about 40% or just under 40% of deaths have happened in the United States. If we take a look at the number of active cases, the number of active cases is about 9.68 million against total active cases of 25.5 million. It is almost equal to you can say, 50% or about 40%. So what it points out is, do we have a real problem in the United States where covid seems to be focused and concentrated, everything in the United States in terms of active cases, in terms of deaths and in terms of total cases relative to the world. recognizing, many of these things happened in Asia went to Europe and then came to the United States. So there is something really that has gone agog.
Then you compare to India, India is roughly about 11 million cases, close to 10.5 million have recovered, 140 or 145 thousand deaths and 155 active cases. So there is a very very high recovery and very low death rate and very low active cases. So is the crowd or herd immunity working or India has a different formula or Indian people have a different formula dispensing and dealing with this covid.
So these are two contrasting situations which raise the question which is, when you look at just the cases and in relation to this whole study that was conducted in Wuhan by WHO, so you have WHO now saying that the epidemic or the pandemic is not an accidental leakage or an accidental origin from the labs and it could have been caused from food, it would have been cast of other kinds of issues. So it has raised a number of questions. Mike Pompeo came and issued a very strong statement, which is, you can put the WHO studies down the bog. Then came a very important discussion that happened yesterday with the J&J CEO who said covid is here to stay and this will be here to stay for a few years and every year just like the other flu vaccines people may have to take the covid-19 vaccine as part of another protocol. Well, we have had at least two instances where you know, one from Florida, one from MIT with people being caught for collaborating with China in the viral disease area with this virus. We also had the death of a guy at the University of Pittsburgh who was trying to find a mechanism to cure this. So there is more than what meets the eye with regard to covid, its origins, its source, what is it, its cure and the high level of concentration that we are seeing in the United States. It’s not a conspiracy theory or anything. But the story here is, what is the problem? I have discussed with some of the hospitals and the doctors personally myself, even yesterday and the people throw up their hands and say look, we don’t know we’re still in the process of discovery. We don’t know. But the numbers and some of the statements are very contrasting.
Sree Iyer: Thank you, sir, and viewers those of you who followed the Super Bowl match that ended last Sunday with Tom Brady’s team winning the Super Bowl again at 43 perhaps Tom Brady is one of the oldest quarterbacks to have won the Super Bowl and here is a picture of his locker room and one can’t help but notice that he has a sculpture of Lord Ganesha, the remover of all obstacles and I guess it is an important sign that even in the west where people think that the religion is overwhelmingly Abrahamic. Many of those who are enlightened typically have this belief that Lord Ganesha is a remover of obstacles. We wish Tom Brady all the best in his future endeavours. There is nobody who has gotten a Super Bowl ring after they’ve turned 44. We will have to try and see if he’s going to repeat it next year, but then I thought we would share it with our viewers. Let’s move on to markets, sir. One of the big concerns, I have you don’t have much time, maybe one minute. Is the rise in the price of crude, it is skirting $60 a barrel. Now, what are the reasons for this? Is it just a geospherical instability concern that is driving the price up or is it also the fact that Keystone is now closed? What are the other factors that are driving the price high?
Sridhar Chityala: Price is always driven by market volatility, also driven by demand and supply equation. The is crude is just over 58, Futures are trading at 60. As you correctly pointed out, if you are going to ban Keystone XL pipeline if you are going to ban all kinds of leases, new leases that are to come up either in water or on land. If you eventually go towards banning the fracking, you’re going to have one of the highest consumers of crude, which is the United States going into the import market from being a net exporter. So, therefore, people are tightening up the supplies in the OPEC nations saying this is the moment of reckoning and we have an opportunity. Remember, the oil prices climbed from $34 to about $60 right now and over the course of this specific show, we are getting close to a hundred. Over the past three months in the next show, which is tomorrow, we’ll try to put the chart of the rise of the crude and show to people. Those economies which are energy-dependent such as India, such as even china, such as some of the ASEAN countries we’ll have to reconfigure their pricing. And if they haven’t done any kind of planning in terms of the future, there are consequences of these rising prices which indirectly will fuel inflation into those markets.
Sree Iyer: With that, we bring a close to today’s segment of daily Global insights. Thanks for watching. Do subscribe to our channel. Sridharji, as always, pleasure having you on our platform. Namaskar, and we’ll be back tomorrow bright and early, same time. See you all tomorrow.
Sridhar Chityala: Thank you. Have a wonderful day.