Emergic: Rajesh Jain's Blog

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The Right Fight – Part 2

August 30th, 2011 · 14 Comments

Let’s take a brief look around us in India. Of course, this is a crib sheet, but stay with me. There is an important point coming up. Try and figure that out.

The government controls all radio news broadcasts. The prices of petrol and diesel are still set by the government. Education continues to have end-to-end government  Control. Make a trip abroad and try getting an iPad back to India through customs without paying duty or a bribe – no Lok Pal bill to the rescue there. The potholes on the streets continue to be there. The government controls which movies we are allowed to watch. Air-India continues to be given a blank cheque so it can fly our Maharajas. The public sector telecom provider, BSNL, is well on its path to emulating Air-India. Many of our public sector banks keep giving loans to favored parties and conveniently take write-offs a few years later.

When cities are going vertical worldwide, our Floor Space Index limit is set unreasonably low . NREGA has put India on an inflation treadmill, but the talking-heads blame it on external factors. Right to Food is all set to join the growing list of unaffordable entitlements:  Right to employment and Right to Education. The real cash-for-votes schemes are in front of us, but we cannot see them. We have a prime minister who falsely takes credit for liberalizing the economy in 1991. Inflation is rampant, threatening to slow economic growth but the blame, according to the government, lives somewhere else – the US, Europe, the world, perhaps the stars – anywhere and anything but misgovernance.

We the people are content that the resolution of a few scams is that some scapegoats have been identified and put behind bars; it does not appear to matter that those who are the real prime movers behind all those scams continue to loot the public. New malls and tv shows are the opiate of the masses.

So the fight appears to be over. Who won?

Continued tomorrow.

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14 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Roshan // Aug 30, 2011 at 8:23 am

    Rajesh, agree with your points above esp NREGA which has basically ensured that we are building a nation of lazy complacent people. What I don’t agree with is the public lamenting. I don’t belv pessimism lends itself to leadership and if the point of having this blog and a public persona is to provide thought leadership, it is probably better done by heroic behavior – either inspiring or else Baddie bashing. Pessimistic thinking attracts only losers and as lee Kwan yeuw says ‘the Human spirit is Amazing in that it can achieve superhuman things when motivated by faith and belief’!!

    Cheers,

  • 2 Piyush Ranjan // Aug 30, 2011 at 9:27 am

    NREGA has empowered weakest of the sections to have some sort of social security. You are comparing in convenience to question of survival. Inflation is for rich people worry. I really do not care if you cannot carry your ipad through customs. Buy it here or something. BSNL and Air India have issues but there is no solution. They cannot be sold right now at these valuations. Our banks are far better compared to their counterparts in other countries.

  • 3 Piyush Ranjan // Aug 30, 2011 at 9:29 am

    I think you could do much better than this pessimism and rant. Give us a vision, a solution. We have high expectations from you.

  • 4 Asim // Aug 30, 2011 at 11:12 am

    If Manmohan singh didn’t liberalize the economy in 1991, did some extra terrestrial alien come and do it? Or was that also the handiwork of BJP?

    Credit should be given where it is due. While it is true that without political backing he couldn’t have liberalized the economy, but the ideas and execution were his. To take that away is to deny the facts.

    Regarding lokpal, while it is true that we have systemic issues that give rise to corruption, it is also true that the corrupt are brazen because the investigating and prosecuting arms of the government are compromised today. They are not independent to investigate the corrupt. The lokpal seeks to provide the autonomy.

    We need solutions to issues, not rants like what we get from Arundhati “every thing is screwed up” Roy.

  • 5 Atanu // Aug 31, 2011 at 12:14 am

    Asim wrote

    If Manmohan singh didn’t liberalize the economy in 1991, did some extra terrestrial alien come and do it?

    That’s a glaring example of a “false choice” logical fallacy. Manmohan Singh and extra terrestrial aliens do not exhaust the universe of possibilities of those who could be responsible for liberalization of the economy. Singh was in PV Narasimha Rao’s cabinet and necessarily had to get PVNR’s permission for whatever he did. There is considerable evidence that Singh was forced by PVNR to liberalize the economy. That liberalization of the economy is not part of Singh’s make up is clear from what Singh has done as the prime minister — a post which has a lot more authority than being the finance minister: he has done precisely nothing to liberalize it. If indeed Singh had anything to do with liberalization, we would have seen some during the last seven years.

    Asim starts off his comment with nonsense, and it goes downhill from there. I am certainly wasting time responding to nonsense but stupid claims by ignorant unthinking people like Asim should not be unchallenged because otherwise they start believing in the nonsense they peddle, which is harmful because these people vote.

    About the lokpal bill and other assorted nonsense masquerading as the solution to India’s misgovernance I have written on my blog. I refer you to those posts.

  • 6 anna // Aug 30, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    rajesh is best at pessimism and rant. elite south mumbai attitude.

    @piyush@asim why take the trouble of asking for solution.

    for all problems one solution “bjp”.
    follow “friends of bjp “get bjp to power.. so that south mumbai elite n his elite group can become policy changer .ie: take a post for policy changing or may be business for sure.

    to set the records straight…

    Dear rajesh please check the rate of inflation YoY when NDA was in power.

    Please check the rise in per catia income YoY and compare NDA vs UPA

    Please check how airindia bleed in NDA days.

    and please please if you can write in your blog 5 policy changes that NDA did from congress govenment 91-96.

  • 7 Atanu // Aug 31, 2011 at 12:36 am

    anna:

    rajesh is best at pessimism and rant. elite south mumbai attitude.

    In just 11 words, you have revealed your tenuous grasp on reality. India is in a mess and that should be clear to everyone who is not comatose. But unfortunately, people such as you constitute a fairly significant segment of voters who fail to see the rot in the system. It is for their benefit that one has to point out what is plainly evident. I suppose you’d rather be comforted in your illusion that everything is hunky-dory. Which is why I suppose you assess the post as a pessimistic rant.

    The first step to solving any problem is to fully and dispassionately understand the situation. Disaster sites are never pretty and reporting on them honestly is not an indication of pessimism. Indeed, if it was beyond redemption, one would not bother to report, leave alone fix it. There’s hope for India and that hope lies in our doing the right thing to save India. Doing the right thing requires distinguishing causes and effects. Corruption is one of the many unfortunate effects of government control. What the JLP bill (or any bill of its kind) tries to do is to address the effect without eliminating the cause. It is a mindless response and will lead to much grief as mindless actions invariably do.

    And BTW, neither Rajesh nor I believe that the BJP is the solution to the problem. My contention is that the Congress (and the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty) is a major part of the problem and they have to go if India is to have any hope. The BJP is the only alternative national party and while it is not perfect, it is possible that they will get their act together — provided the Indian middle-class demands good governance.

    Your comment does not bode well but my sincere hope is that you are in a minority, and thankfully your kind will not be successful in stopping the needed change.

    Sincerely,
    Atanu

  • 8 Yogi // Aug 30, 2011 at 10:26 pm

    Dear Rajesh,
    I am highly dissapointed by your views. I don’t know what makes you so qualified to make such comments? It is lot easy to write a blog than to go on real action site. And pretend that you are willing to contribute to the society?It is called Hypocrisy. Please get thing straight instead of looking through your poltical glasses(BJP). As for as corruption is concerned—BJp and Congress are the two sides of the same coin.

    I am damn optimistic that things are just around the horizon to change…It is just beginning..

    Have a great time!

  • 9 Asim // Aug 31, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Atanu,

    Wow!…you replied to my post by calling me “..stupid”, “nonsensical”, “nonthinking”…it is certainly a mark of great intellectual capacity. Keep it up, you’ll do great in life.

    It appears to me that you are so blinded by your hatred for anything Congress and Manmohan Singh that facts don’t matter to you anymore.

    You say “There is considerable evidence that Singh was forced by PVNR to liberalize the economy”. This appears absurd to me. Why would PVNR hire Singh and then force him to do something. He could have kept the portfolio for himself and hogged the entire credit for liberalization. The guy was no economist, and he knew that at that critical juncture in 1991, India needed an economist of international stature/credibility because India’s finances were in a mess. So, certainly credit goes to PVNR for hiring Singh and providing the political backing, but to say that he dictated what Singh did I think is absurd and contrary to facts.

    People like me at least live and work in this country and vote. I’m not so sure about you..

    Asim

  • 10 Piyush Ranjan // Aug 31, 2011 at 8:01 pm

    And even if he did “force” MS to do liberalization whats so wrong with that ? Every boss does that at some point or the other. Thats not important. Whats important that he did a good job of liberalization 1.0.

    That said, I do agree that this govt. has faltered and PM takes a large part of the blame. This country did give them a great mandate and they have done an epic fail job at that.

    What I want to ask Rajesh and Atanu that why do you have to go with BJP ? Why not start your own party and do it right ? Why do have to go with the second worst (thats what I think of BJP as) ?

  • 11 DefeatCongress // Sep 1, 2011 at 4:00 am

    “What I want to ask Rajesh and Atanu that why do you have to go with BJP ? Why not start your own party and do it right ? Why do have to go with the second worst (thats what I think of BJP as) ?”

    I will save some of the time of Rajesh and Atanu by answering this. I have been following their blogs and I think my answer would be agreeable to them.

    The main reason to go with BJP is that it takes huge amount of time to establish a national party that can win majority. BJP was established about 4 decades ago and was in power for only 6 years with coalition! Imagine the time we will waste to fix India’s problems if we start from scratch. Instead, we, all the like minded voters who believe in the ‘pretty good principles’ explained by Rajesh can come together and force BJP to play the politics of development and less government control + reforms. That is the fastest way to fix India’s trouble. Else, decedents of Chacha will make us all bhukha+nanga!

  • 12 Atanu // Sep 1, 2011 at 4:42 am

    Thank you, DefeatCongress. I could not have put it better.

    Sincerely,
    Atanu

  • 13 mockingbuddha // Sep 2, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Finally for the first time there are a lot more naysayers in these climes than have been spotted before. Welcome guys!

    Rajesh, I guess that the guys are beginning to look through you, and your cowboy buddy as all mouth and no action.

    Professional Jealousy is it? You rant forever about corruption and when Anna decides to do something about it, its efficacy notwithstanding, I would have, like the others expected you to offer words of support.

    People have guessed (correctly?) that your moral compass is stuck firmly North (read BJP) to the exclusion of any other possibility.

    Anna’s movement is what one would have expected of you, a translation of anger not just into words but into real action.

    As we can see, in addition to me even the others are disappointed with your response (to Anna), and your non response (to the issues you tend to crib about)

    Well, you got one thing right at least, but for Rao there would have been no liberalization,at least in the slap bang style,even Chidambaram admitted as such in some interview I remember reading.

    The idea that free market economics work has been taking a beating for so long that I wonder why you guys havent noticed.

    Everywhere governments have been active again, simply because capitalism of the free market kind has been hurt and needed bandaging. India has largely escaped the burn due to its government holding some control over some sectors. As to which sectors the government should hold however remains debatable.

    As regards NREGA, fine it is molly coddling, but then some molly coddling always pays returns in the long run, many of us write in the Queen’s language because of some historical molly coddling in recognition for some innate talent that showed up despite some un-tale worthy background. What was your story?

    I do not know if you have made the point that right thinking people would have been held back by their conscience when joining Anna, the ones who joined needed to ask themselves if they would not be corrupt, given certain situations.

    There is a certain smugness to the Anna’s campaign, it is as if corruption is limited to the larger levels. However it is the corruption at the lower level that not only stinks but makes us feel small, that arena of action is still open, and if you wish to be remembered for more than just rant, that area of action is still open to you and your cowboy.

    More on this after I read your other posts.

    I have always held that Atanu is a disgrace to this blog and his comments here prove it.

    Just because someone does not agree with you is no reason for name calling. The putrefaction he is capable of is visible and it is best that he be stay back in his corral, or be reined in. Ya, even though he is the cowboy and you are his horse, did I get that word right (smirk)

    Defeat Congress, if Anna can start movements within a fortnight, so can Rajesh and the others; Atanu, listening?

  • 14 mockingbuddha // Sep 5, 2011 at 7:13 am

    Stupidity or Plain Arrogance?

    “Asim starts off his comment with nonsense, and it goes downhill from there. I am certainly wasting time responding to nonsense but stupid claims by ignorant unthinking people like Asim should not be unchallenged because otherwise they start believing in the nonsense they peddle, which is harmful because these people vote.”

    Scratching his own itch and expecting us to notice…

    “About the lokpal bill and other assorted nonsense masquerading as the solution to India’s misgovernance I have written on my blog. I refer you to those posts.”

    We can hardly stand you here, you expect us to visit your blog and consume more of what you dish out?

    RAW, please note, new LTTE in the making ->

    “My contention is that the Congress (and the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty) is a major part of the problem and they have to go if India is to have any hope. ”

    Well, go ahead and shoot them 😉 cowboy

    Hilarious….

    Despite being an economist or some thing like that, Atanu proves that he can count: ->

    ” In just 11 words, you have revealed your tenuous grasp on reality. ”

    Azim: you should realize that when old men marry!!!!! …..answer to

    ” Why would PVNR hire Singh and then force him to do something”

    I guess Nara Rao failed to check MMS birth certificate, like our Army does when it appoints Army Cheifs…. 🙂

    Piyush: they are afraid to play piper of Hamlin, but want everyone else to -> in response to

    “What I want to ask Rajesh and Atanu that why do you have to go with BJP ? Why not start your own party and do it right ? Why do have to go with the second worst (thats what I think of BJP as) ? ”

    Two old aunts?

    Defeat Congress – >

    “Instead, we, all the like minded voters who believe in the ‘pretty good principles’ explained by Rajesh can come together and force BJP to play the politics of development and less government control + reforms. ”

    The problem is that there are wrong minded people in the BJP who will force them to do the monkey dance, and screw up the development story” What are the Uma Bhartis for but to add spectacle?

    Believe me, they just cannot do without it, see Gujarat for instance, wear a tail, douse it in petrol, burn some bums, when the tamasha gets over, hey hello, it is development time.

    Like the kid who studies extra hard after wasting a lot of time playing, he is trying to convince himself that he has not been that bad.

    I should say that Gujaratis have been lucky that the burning was done much before the development. With the Nazis and the Fascists it was the other way around.

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