Ep. 122: The 2019 Elections

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Elections in India are madly complex, and defy simple explanations. Sadanand Dhume joins Amit Varma in episode 122 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss the Age of Modi, and what these elections mean for India, the BJP and the Congress party.

Also check out:

  1. Sadanand Dhume's bio and archives

  2. The Questions That Election 2019 Leaves Us With -- Amit Varma

  3. Beware of the Useful Idiots -- Amit Varma

  4. Amit Varma's writings+podcasts on DeMon, in one twitter thread

  5. The Intellectual Foundations of Hindutva -- ep 115 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Aakar Patel)

  6. Modi's Lost Opportunity -- ep 119 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Salman Soz)

  7. The BJP's Magic Formula -- ep 45 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Prashant Jha)

  8. Rajesh Jain's Journey to Dhan Vapasi -- ep 94 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Rajesh Jain)

  9. The Paradox of Narendra Modi -- ep 102 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Shashi Tharoor)

  10. Why Both Modi and Trump are Textbook Populists -- Amit Varma

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the new and improved IVM Podcast App on Android: https://ivm.today/android
or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios

Ep. 120: Resisting State Injustice

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Conventional wisdom holds that there are three ways to respond to injustice by the state: we may leave, complain, or comply. Philosopher Jason Brennan joins Amit Varma in episode 120 of The Seen and the Unseen to argue that there is a fourth option: to resist.

Also check out:

When All Else Fails -- Jason Brennan

The Milgram Experiment 

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the new and improved IVM Podcast App on Android: https://ivm.today/android
or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios

Ep. 119: Modi's Lost Opportunity

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Despite being a Congress spokesperson, economist Salman Soz was hopeful in 2014 that the Modi government would be good for India. As the title of his new book indicates, that turned out to be quite The Great Disappointment. Soz joins Amit Varma in episode 119 of The Seen and the Unseen to elaborate on the many economic failures of the Modi government. He also tackles tough questions on the Congress party.

Also check out:

  1. The Great Disappointment -- Salman Soz

  2. India's Lost Decade -- Ep 116 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Puja Mehra)

  3. DeMon, Morality and the Predatory Indian State -- Ep 85 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Shruti Rajagopalan)

  4. The Bad and Complex Tax -- ep 74 of The Seen and the Unseen ( w Shruti Rajagopalan)

  5. The Fraud of Indian Education -- ep 77 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Amit Chandra)

  6. The Importance of Cities -- ep 108 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Reuben Abraham & Pritika Hingorani)

  7. The State of Our Farmers -- ep 86 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Gunvant Patil)

  8. Beware of the Useful Idiots -- Amit Varma

  9. A Manifesto for Progress -- Amit Varma

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the new and improved IVM Podcast App on Android: https://ivm.today/android
or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios

Ep. 116: India's Lost Decade

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In 2008, India was growing at 8.8% and was described as a miracle economy. It all went downhill in the next 10 years. Puja Mehra, author of The Lost Decade, joins Amit Varma in episode 116 of The Seen and the Unseen to describe the random events, political imperatives and human dramas that collided to bring us to the brink of a crisis.

Also check out:

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the new and improved IVM Podcast App on Android: https://ivm.today/android
or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios

Ep. 114: Crime in Indian Politics

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Why is crime ubiquitous in Indian politics? Why is your neta also a dada? Political scientist Milan Vaishnav joins Amit Varma in episode 114 of The Seen and the Unseen to speak about the incentives in play that have brought us to this place.

Also check out:

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the new and improved IVM Podcast App on Android: https://ivm.today/android
or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios

Ep. 113: The Geopolitics of the Bangladesh War

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The formation of Bangladesh was neither inevitable nor a bilateral matter between India and Pakistan. Historian Srinath Raghavan joins Amit Varma in episode 113 of The Seen and the Unseen to describe the geopolitical forces that shaped those events of 1971.

Also check out:

  1. 1971: A Global History of the Creation of Bangladesh -- Srinath Raghavan

  2. The Blood Telegram  -- Gary Bass

  3. Uncle Sam in South Asia -- episode 93 of The Seen and the Unseen, with Srinath Raghavan

  4. Understanding the India-Pakistan Conflict - episode 111 of The Seen and the Unseen, with Srinath Raghavan

  5. The formation of the Mujibnagar interim government

  6. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's speech at the UN 

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the new and improved IVM Podcast App on Android: https://ivm.today/android
or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios

Ep. 111: The India-Pakistan Conflict

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What are the hidden dynamics of the India-Pakistan conflict? What are the possible ways of resolving it? Historian and foreign policy analyst Srinath Raghavan joins Amit Varma in episode 111 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss the game theory and geopolitics of this messy situation.

Also check out:

Ep. 110: Reporting Venezuela

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Venezuela is a country blessed by nature but cursed by politics. Journalist Alexandra Ulmer joins Amit Varma in episode 110 of The Seen and the Unseen to share her insights from her years as a reporter there.

Also check out:
Alexandra Ulmer's homepage 

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the new and improved IVM Podcast App on Android: https://ivm.today/android
or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios

Ep. 103: The Emergency

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The Emergency of 1975 was not an aberration, but was written into the DNA of the Indian state. Historian Gyan Prakash joins Amit Varma in episode 103 of The Seen and the Unseen to shed light on why the framers of the constitution gave such draconian powers to the state -- and why we may not have become so free in 1947 after all.

Also read:

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the IVM Podcast App on Android: https://goo.gl/tGYdU1 or iOS: https://goo.gl/sZSTU5

You can check out our website at http://www.ivmpodcasts.com

Ep. 102: The Paradox of Narendra Modi

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Shashi Tharoor, author of The Paradoxical Prime Minister, joins Amit Varma in episode 102 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about the many faces of Narendra Modi, as well as the nature of politics, the idea of India and his own journey as a politician.

Also read:

The Paradoxical Prime Minister on Amazon, as well as Shashi Tharoor's other books.
The Facts Do Not Matter  -- Amit Varma
No Free Trade For Horses  -- Ep 13 of The Seen and the Unseen, on the Anti-Defection Law.

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the IVM Podcast App on Android: https://goo.gl/tGYdU1 or iOS: https://goo.gl/sZSTU5

You can check out our website at http://www.ivmpodcasts.com

Ep. 93: America in South Asia

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For over 200 years, America has been interested in South Asia across three separate axes: power, ideology and culture. Historian Srinath Raghavan joins Amit Varma in episode 93 of The Seen and the Unseen to provide a guided tour of this fascinating history.

Also read: 
The Most Dangerous Place: A History of the United States in South Asia.

Ep. 86: The State of Our Farmers

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India's agricultural crisis has been caused by the state. Farmer leader Gunvant Patil of the Shetkari Sanghatana joins Amit Varma in episode 86 of The Seen and the Unseen to explain the many ways in which Big Government has created our agricultural crisis.

Also see:

'We Must Save Our Farmers' -- Amit Varma
'Free the Farmers' -- Barun Mitra
'The Crisis in Indian Agriculture' -- Brainstorm discussion on Pragati
'Entry and Exit in Agriculture' -- Episode 1 of The Seen and the Unseen
'The Farmer Rolls the Dice' -- Episode 12 of The Seen and the Unseen
'The Unseen Effects of Farm Loan Waivers' -- Episode 25 of The Seen and the Unseen
Down to Earth -- The collected writings of Sharad Joshi

Ep. 85: DeMon, Morality and the Predatory Indian State

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Episode 85 of The Seen and the Unseen is about Demonetisation -- and a lot else. First, host Amit Varma launches into an angry monologue about how economic benefits can never justify moral costs. Then he is joined by economist Shruti Rajagopalan, who elaborates on all the things wrong with DeMon. They discuss the predatory Indian state, how Indians are forced into jugaad to cope with it, and that this jugaad might seem to be a good thing, but represents the enormous cost that all of us pay.

**Also see**:

1. Most of Amit Varma's writing on DeMon, collected in one Twitter thread
2. 'Narendra Modi Takes a Great Leap Backwards' -- Amit Varma
3.'The Landscape of Freedom in India' -- Amit Varma
4.'The Humanitarian Cost Trumps Any Economic Argument' -- Amit Varma
5. 'What the RBI data on demonetization tells us' -- Shruti Rajagopalan
6. 'Demonetisation and Welfare' -- Shruti Rajagopalan and Larry White
7. 'Formalization of the economy is a form of coercion' -- Shruti Rajagopalan
8. Episode 2 of The Seen and the Unseen, on Demonetisation, with Suyash Rai
9. Episode 18 of The Seen and the Unseen, on restaurant regulations, with Madhu Menon
 

Ep. 84: Being Gay in India

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What is it like to grow up gay in a deeply homophobic country? Writer and stand-up comedian Navin Noronha joins Amit Varma in ep 84 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about his experience of growing up gay in Bhayandar, and his insights from his podcast, Keeping it Queer.

Also check out
Keeping it Queer -- Navin Noronha's podcast
How I Met My Daddy -- Navin Noronha
The Matunga Racket -- Amit Varma

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the IVM Podcast App on Android: https://goo.gl/tGYdU1 or iOS: https://goo.gl/sZSTU5
You can check out our website at http://www.ivmpodcasts.com/

Ep. 81: Chinese Foreign Policy

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How does China see its place in the world? What are its foreign policy objectives? Should India be worried? China expert Manoj Kewalramani joins Amit Varma in episode 81 of The Seen and the Unseen.

Also check out:
Eye on China : Manoj Kewalramani's weekly column in Pragati.
Inside Xi's China : Takshashila's online course, conducted by Manoj.
Understanding Foreign Policy : Episode 63 of The Seen and the Unseen.

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the IVM Podcast App on Android: https://goo.gl/tGYdU1 or iOS: https://goo.gl/sZSTU5
You can check out our website at http://www.ivmpodcasts.com/

Ep. 79: Democracy in Pakistan

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Is there really democracy in Pakistan? What were these elections all about? Pranay Kotasthane and Hamsini Hariharan join Amit Varma in episode 79 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss the two Pakistans, and what lies ahead.


You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the IVM Podcast App on Android: https://goo.gl/tGYdU1 or iOS: https://goo.gl/sZSTU5

You can check out our website at http://www.ivmpodcasts.com/

Ep. 78: Crowd Violence in India

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More and more, across this country, violent crowds are taking the law into their own hands. What's going on? Legal experts Madhav Chandavarkar and Alok Prasanna Kumar share their insights with Amit Varma in episode 78 of The Seen and the Unseen.
We Don't Need Another Law -- Amit Varma

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the IVM Podcast App on Android: https://goo.gl/tGYdU1 or iOS: https://goo.gl/sZSTU5

You can check out our website at http://www.ivmpodcasts.com/

Ep. 64: Libertarianism

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What does it mean to be free? What is the basis of individual rights? Episode 64 of The Seen and the Unseen is a rerun of an old episode of The Pragati Podcast, as Amit Varma tells Pavan Srinath what it means to be a libertarian, and why it all boils down to one word: Consent.

You can listen to this show and other awesome shows on the IVM Podcast App on Android: https://goo.gl/tGYdU1 or iOS: https://goo.gl/sZSTU5

You can check out our website at http://www.ivmpodcasts.com/