Nov 21, 2012

Corruption of Politics Vs Politics of Corruption

Corruption of politics has lead to a new genre' of politics, the politics of corruption. Endless scams have suddenly been coming out of every closet, ever since the supposed loot equations of the IPL got out of array. It is known, understood, felt and believed that there is a scam going on everywhere at any moment and whenever the loot equations get imbalanced the co-parceners in the loot expose each other. 

After all, information that gets generated at the occurrence of some event, transaction or action is known first, even before occurrence of the event, only to the doers. The affected may discover, but later only since if they indeed would discover it at the same moment it would be a dacoity or theft and not a scam of trillions. So, in all likelihood, the multi-dimensional cabals that form in the process of mass loot of massive proportions develop fissures and when there is no honesty left in between the dishonest looters a scam surfaces out, most of the time. 
Information comes into existence at the very instance any kind of event arises, yet information propagates forward only on some motive. The best newspapers are those that never get published, we all know. 

Unpublished Newspapers have the most important news! 

Allow me to share a favourite surmise. As in the laws of physics -- a hard science, the forms of energy are interconvertible from potential to kinetic etc. etc., similarly a law of governance -- an artful softer science, the forms of power are interconvertible from financial markets, big business, bureacracy, politics, media and even the mafiosi. At the top table in the pantheon of power there are only winners irrespective of the route they took to reach the top of the influence and impact making chain! 

If this surmise is true, which I believe it is, then the modern day power & influence process and thus the politics and governance of nations is unfair to be discussed with a unipolar agenda of targetting only the political generation of the present times for all the ills. All of us know, everyone of us is responsible for bringing us together where we have come and every form of influence or power is a co-parcener in propagating the values we collectively live with! 

In such a context the leap from jingoism of "Mera Neta Chor Hai" to contesting elections and entering the legislature is parochial at best and self-serving at the worst. 

I propose some direct questions in this note to Mr. Arvind Kejriwal the epitome of the fight against corruption in today's India. I seek to ask him, by contesting elections while he has chosen one respectable path to respect democracy and fight the war against corruption within the norms of civilized warfare, has he done enough to insulate himself and his movement sufficiently from the reflexive process through which we the people of India have allowed ourselves to be gutted so far? Is his ideal and his approach not as susceptible as is the dream of a young man barely out of college with every emotion heaving in his bosom to change this world? 

A Bureaucrat who meant sense! 

A Revolutionary who conveyed sense!!                                          A politician? Will he make sense? 

I urge all those who read through this note to ask Shri Kejriwal on his twitter handle @arvindkejriwal7 to respond to my queries and concerns here and those that you have. He promises to be India's most accountable politician and lets trust his promise and get him to respond then. 

An open letter to Shri Arvind Kejriwal, slogans proposing him to be next Prime Minister of India already having being aired: 


21st November, 2012

Dear Shri Kejriwal, 

Salutes to your spirit, sense and enterprise in jolting this civilization called India into waking up and beginning to figure out a fight to get its conscience. From slavery where Bapu and Chacha Nehru lead us in the fight for freedom, this perhaps is the next important fight in our evolution, to achieve conscience as a nation and civilization. 

Your intentions seem what they are, noble. However, as a stake-holder in your enterprise I do wish to ask you things that concern me and seek to alert you at the other hand that we the people of India may not be lead into yet another quagmire. 

I am sure you do remember the spirit of a clean India that the late Shri Rajiv Gandhi pursued vigorously while having a dream parliamentary majority on his side. He failed. A singular factor described then was that he antagonised the permanent seat of power, the bureacracy by raising a stick at them without providing for enough of carrots. You as an aspirant to enter the legislature at this point are way more ill-equipped than this charmer in our history who had a dream majority by his side. The odds are stacked so heavily, at least at this point by the mere comparison from recent history that one wishes to ask a few questions first in this milieu: 

  • Why have you not provoked and invoked the ire of bureaucrats, past or present, as yourself who may have harboured a similar angst, ire and frustration at who We the People of India have become so far? Do you believe you are the only one with this high IQ, strong education and competence to be in so much pain on our current state? Why have you not made covert or overt efforts to widen your team and base with people with a similar background? 
  • Do you not feel a strong radical approach is necessary to invoke the place of pride in the Services first , since the Services are the permanent seat of power and thus governance, so as there is an emotional, psychological, economic and social incentive for the best of the breed involved with governance to agree to clean up the system? A mere Lokpal or Janlokpal and fear psychosis with it will let the bureacracy stay functional, take decisions and execute? Power of incentives, including satisfying every element of Maslow's Hierarchy of needs and beyond is necessary or not? Do you not remember the CBI raid raj on the Banking Administration in the gone decade when the bankers became synonymous with those who will lift their pens but not bring it to paper to sign any decisions bringing the economy to a grind with credit cycles getting frozen? Do you not wish to learn from this piece of our history too that "stasis" is what ensues with a raid raaj or license raaj? Fear is an inferior motivator and to be used only like quinine if the fevers of malaria are to be suppressed. The treatment is care, food, rest and the inner will to be cured. In this context then, what is your plan to bring back pride, respect and interest of the most competitive DNA amongst Indians to seek careers in Police, Administration and other Services? Will it be good to see you as the Prime Minister of this country who will fail to address this depleting self-respect and thus morale and moral intensity in our services? Can we instill pride merely by Service Awards or by a straight and direct mechanism of performance incentives? Can we continue to cry foul over the thievery some of the most competent men and women of India who join the services do but spare not even a thought on how we as a nation can allocate our budgets, finances and economic decisions to compensate them as the best? Do you wish to continue to sell me the dream of an India where the regulator will earn less than the regulated and still remain honest? Please why don't you consider giving me a regular supply of opium instead if you are imagining that the likes of me will continue to buy this unipolar dream of a Janlokpal that can be the panacea of all ills? 
Now, lets move to this holy idea of black-money. Is Punishment a device in jurisprudence and moral sciences for making the society a better place? Is Punishment a device to ensure that the damage done so far will be reversed? Is Punishment only a device for creating a fear and moral deterrent for the not so die hard to not try the same crime in the future? What have you done so far to include in your manifesto of this erratic revolution or for the manifesto of the political party that you are floating about the root cause of the process of generation of unaccounted wealth and thus black income? Do you not understand and believe that high rates of Income Tax are an osmotic barrier that damage us in multiple ways regarding black money? High rates of Income Tax become an incentive for people to produce unaccounted money which is what the corruptible and corrupt political process prevailing at this point of our time thrives on and needs regularly and why, of all the revolutionaries, you have not begun to address this as yet? Why are you not even mentioning a clear plan that will in a time bound manner drive our economy to the most competitive rates of Income Tax to demoralize this demon of black money into not growing any further? Why are you not thinking that the forces of the market-place and the self-interest of each involved will automatically bring back the money to a geography where it is economical to keep it, with low income tax rates? In any case, would you please explain your economic philosophy at least in the context of a simple idea if those who create income and wealth should be taxed or those who consume and spend resources and wealth more than is productive for the society as a combined unit be taxed more? If a revolution is indeed what India needs to radically break apart from traditions of sad economic choices that most of the mankind has been making and usher into a leadership for entire mankind into a truly free and fair society, then why are we lacking the courage to say that Income will be taxed minimally and that there shall be progressively larger and larger taxes on items of luxury, ostentatious consumption and hedonism? Do you believe that by following the well trodden path full of economic blunders as popular across nations of this world your utopia of a corruption free or corruption lessened India is possible? if you believe so, why dont you instead send me a daily strong dose of opium so as the thinking genes in me that fearlessly question you too become quiet? 

Lets look beyond those governing, the governed now. What are you doing about moving the governed from this deep circuitous journey into frustration and anger at what has been done to them, to a realization that the governed have done it more to themselves than any and then onto a state of pride at having a decisiveness to undo it? What are you hoping that the aam aadmi of this civilization will do to desist from the rat-race, to be morality abiding and not be the inducement to the wrong-doers? This set of questions is critical, since if not addressed within time, I would need to ask you directly now, why are you taking the risk of frustrating folks as me, the aam admis to believe that first we were frustrated because we did not have an Arvind Kejriwal and now we are frustrated more so, because despite having found Arvind Kejriwal nothing did really change? Why are you risking despite knowing the failure of a Rajiv Gandhi's dream majority in parliament that indeed another bureacrat turned politician V. P. Singh too fanned a revolution in the name of the injustice meted out to the backward castes? Is your enterprise at this point not lacking in foresight and ignoring every leaf of history in not addressing any dimension beyond the creation of a totalitarian fear and punishment machinery called Janlokpal? What are you waiting for to open this revolution on every plank? Do you wish to tell me that like a good warrior who opens only one flank at a time, revolutions are rolled out as surgically as a war? 

I will keep coming back to you Mr. Kejriwal with questions and more questions, since indeed if this is the Big Struggle for regaining the Conscience of India, then it has to be about asking the right questions since right answers cannot be discovered with wrong questons, ever! Yet, for now, let me emphasize the question I believe of all that I have asked in this note to be most important to my mind: 

"Why are you risking the collective emotion of our civilization at this point to be frustrated and angered only and not become determinate despite having had discovered you? What are you waiting for?" 

Frustratingly yours at this moment,

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