Battle of the Gauges, Is Crypto a Ponzi Scam & Ghosts of Calcutta

A mix of articles to tickle your reading neurons.

— This clash of wills and technologies – soon dubbed the Battle of the Gauges – lasted for decades. The major conflict was between supporters of narrow gauge and broad gauge tracks, which might sound as farcical as the episode in Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels, when the Lilliputians argue about whether boiled eggs should be opened at the big end or the little one. But the outcome – eventual victory for the narrow gaugers – entailed long-term, international consequences. Rather than being a petty squabble between petulant technophiles, the Battle of the Gauges resulted in two Acts of Parliament within two years and divided public opinion about the relative merits of modernisation and tradition.

— Crypto remains a bizarre nexus of Ponzi scams posing as an intricate arcade game, in which speculators play digital “hot potato” with illegal securities. It’s the first cult-like ecosystem to obscure itself by combining corporate-speak and technobabble into one native dialect, so much that even the executives of pyramid schemes like Herbalife and Amway, operating under the disguise of “multi-level marketing,” can’t believe what they’re seeing.

Do you believe in ghosts? I do. Not the kind about which we read in horror stories: spirits of the dead doomed to inhabit places; my ghosts are of a different kind, for I see the spirits of dead places inhabiting souls of the living – cities alive in peoples’ minds, trapped in memories, travelling with them from place to place, hoping to find comforts from the past lurking in even the most remote corners of their present.

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