Why everyone in Mongolia drives a Prius

…the clincher is the Prius’s reliability.

Ulaanbaatar may be the chilliest capital in the world. On a winter morning drivers must sometimes start their cars in temperatures below -30°C. Cars that run on petrol and diesel tend to sputter and die at such temperatures. The Prius can use its battery to power its electrical engine until the car warms up enough for the petrol engine to run smoothly—saving many a Mongolian from freezing frustration.

—The Economist, in ‘Everyone in Mongolia drives a Prius

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Tyler Cowen on India and its fragmentations

It’s not just Hindu nationalism on the rise, rather India seems to be evolving intellectually in a multiplicity of directions, few of them familiar to most Americans.

In India, history ain’t over, and further ideological fragmentation seems to be the safest prediction. Note that ideas are very often a leading indicator for where a nation ends up.

—Tyler Cowen, in ‘Expect America and Europe to Matter Less in 2019

The inescapable trilemma of the world economy

Dani Rodrik dubs “the inescapable trilemma of the world economy”.

In a globalised world, a country can have economic integration, the nation-state or democratic politics, but not all three fully.

—The Economist, in ‘The tension between globalisation and democracy

It can choose integration and the nation-state but give up democratic control to technocratic, supranational institutions. It can choose integration and democracy, but give up the nation-state and disappear into supranational government. Or it can choose the nation-state and democracy by embracing impoverished autarky.

Deng Xiaoping’s reform & opening

Mr Dan offers a definition of reform and opening that his powerful cousin would have recognised: a social contract that stresses nationalism and material prosperity, rather than theoretical “-isms”

—The Economist, in ‘Forty years after Deng opened China, reformists are cowed