Mannkal Economic Education Foundation

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Hannah Pham – London | Week 4

Hannah Pham

6 February 2017

This Monday wasn’t like any ordinary Mondays. While walking home, I found myself caught up in the middle of a huge protest over Trump’s Muslim immigration ban. Thousands of people in London poured down to Westminster for an “emergency demonstration” against Prime Minister May’s visit to greet the new President of the United States.

One and half million more people signed a petition to ban Trump from visiting the United Kingdom. Against their wishes, Theresa May went ahead with the invitation hoping to build a good relationship with an unpredictable leader because after all, the US is one of UK’s most important trading partners.

Downing Street protest

On the weekend, Llew, Connor and I headed to China Town for mini celebration of the Lunar New Year. London is known for the biggest Chinese New Year celebration out side of Asia and it lived up to its name. Despite the shivering cold and wet, thousands of people from many backgrounds came together to this corner of London and celebrated the festival. We witnessed traditional lion dances and tasted cultural foods all night!

I feel blessed to experience such diversity and knowing it was an outcome of free market fundamentals.

Lunar New Year in the rain

Beautiful but impractical soap bars at Convent Garden

This week, the IEA hosted a book launch from James Tooley. James Tooley is a professor of education policy at Newscastle University and a supporter of the free market. He is the co-founder of several chains of low-cost private schools in India, Ghana, Nigeria and Honduras.

In his new book “Imprisoned in India”, Tooley exposed the corruption, injustices, imprisonment, misery and bureaucracy that he endured along with other innocent inmates in India. He wrote the book to raise awareness but most importantly, to seek answers to a very important question; “What are we going to do about it?”. We usually take our society and the peace we are living in for granted.

When the rule of law in a country is broken by a private player, it is already a bad situation. It becomes sinister when the government gets involved and abuses their power for personal gain, shielded from foreign actions and helpless citizens. Inspired by his courage and good work, I got myself an autographed copy and I’m very excited to read his journey.

"Imprisoned in India" book launch

More exciting things are happening to me next week, I can’t wait to keep you all updated.

Writing from London with love,


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