Protecting Sight #122: Why nations should pursue soft power. Morgagnian cataract, phaco chop without vacuum, and acquired double vision in a child.

Welcome to my daily learning journal. My daily goal is to watch one Ted Talk and one cataract surgery. I also plan to read one journal article and read/listen to a book chapter, short story or significant work.

Here’s today’s list:

1. Ted Talk – Shashi Tharoor: Why nations should pursue soft power. “India is fast becoming a superpower, says Shashi Tharoor — not just through trade and politics, but through “soft” power, its ability to share its culture with the world through food, music, technology, Bollywood. He argues that in the long run it’s not the size of the army that matters as much as a country’s ability to influence the world’s hearts and minds.” (

I was first introduced to Mr. Shashi Tharoor in 1989, a month after I started college. He had just published a work of fiction — by Wikipedia search, must have been The Great Indian Novel (1989) — and I remember him reading from the work (I distinctly remember him mentioning goat’s milk!)

This 2009 Ted Talk is an exceptional 18 minutes. Prescient observations on the world stage.

But, the whole point is that India is the nationalism of an idea. It’s the idea of an ever-ever-land, emerging from an ancient civilization, united by a shared history, but sustained, above all, by pluralist democracy. That is a 21st-century story as well as an ancient one. And it’s the nationalism of an idea that essentially says you can endure differences of caste, creed, color, culture, cuisine, custom and costume, consonant, for that matter, and still rally around a consensus.

Shashi Tharoor (Ted Talk)

2A. Cataract Surgery – Dr. Neto Rosatelli – Phaco Clip #13 – Morgagnian Cataract. Excellent case (6 minutes). I only wish Dr. Rosatelli included narration.

2B. Cataract Surgery – Uday Devgan MD – Phaco Chop without Vacuum. Dr. Devgan writes, “It is a pleasure to watch an expert surgeon doing cataract surgery and I really enjoyed learning from Dr. Alex Abdo Martins from Brazil. He shows us that we can chop the cataract without using the vacuum holding power of the phaco probe. He accomplishes this by trapping the nucleus between the phaco tip and the chopper, then mechanical forces can be applied to hold and split the cataract. This is all technique dependent and if the instruments are not directly apposed, this technique will not work as well. The video is also interesting because it is performed with the phaco probe in the left hand.” Superb case.

3. Journal – Osigian CJ, Capo H, Cavuoto KM. Acquired Diplopia in a ChildJAMA Ophthalmol. 2017;135(5):491–492. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2016.4417 “A 6-year-old girl presented to the ophthalmology emergency service with 4 days of double vision associated with headache and fever. She had a history of upper respiratory tract infection with nasal congestion and discharge being treated with oral antibiotics. What would you do next?”

4. Book Chapter – The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss – Chapter 22-25. (Gutenberg | enotes)

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