Saturday, September 21, 2013

Crude political process in EMERGING NEW INDIA

This is a high time to utter a few thoughts long lingering on my head. Any political process is strictly crude if one is not democratic in his or her approach to it. Any democratic process of politics is no less comprehensive, in its nature. At best we may agree with one or disagree with other. But let's have in place, first.

I first realized the crude process of politics when I was in high school. I have also watched the crudeness of panchayat's election in the south Indian villages in India. I have participated in the election rallies run upto the 1996 Lok Sabha general election. The MDMK party in Tamil Nadu was major emerging party at least in my district (Villupuram). I still remember how vividly Mr. Vaiko spoke in the election rallies. Cut short. the blame game was rampant among political parties on all ills done by the ruling party both at the Central level as well as at the State level.

There is no end to it even now in 2013-the crude blame game among different groups especially the cult learned community perpetuates! A slice of it play even more to gain short term vested interest.The so called educated lusty adult do very stupid things like the one done by Amartya Sen, Amitav Ghosh and Ananthamurthy, recently.  I completely agree with Dhiraj Nayyar who raised very pertinent point that why these people decline to say who is the alternative to Mr.Modi. Probably, there is none! But why they dare say anything against Mr. Modi and why not others for all the good as well as bad things. I understand these people's internal feelings are no doubt misconceived by all means against the only person they are apposing. 

I am not arguing for any one person who would be elected by the people of this country. Let's have the fair process of politics to come together and argue with truths. Truth alone matter to engage in true spirit of political process to improve the lives of individuals in the country.

If we do not have the other alternative to argue, its like beating the snake before it scares us or bite.

Just that for now.

Other things I read today:

Current science by Guha

Wrong doings of Rajan, the new RBI Man by Ajay Shah

There is very interesting change emerging in the new India. This is to educate the individuals engaging in the political process to run the office. The Takshashila Institution plans to train political workers on civics. This is a good initiative. We need to educate the political workers who aspire to run the governmental job from political process. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Laws of Indian languages

"In 1949 Dr BR Ambedkar had moved a constitutional amendment to make Sanskrit India’s official language replacing Hindi. Not only the leaders from Tamil Nadu supported the move but Mr Naziruddin Ahmed, a Muslim League member from West Bengal also signed it. It’s another story how Hindi finally got the status but the episode amplifies how leaders of a nascent, independent India thought about Sanskrit." More here.

"Say Vanakkam to Tamil and it will be instantly translated as a Vande Mataram to Mother India."

Monday, September 9, 2013

India-"genuine union"

"in Mahatma Gandhi we had our Lincoln; in B.R. Ambedkar, our King. Nehru made better speeches than either but, in hindsight, fell short in both political grandeur and moral stature.". Mre here.

"Our stupidity is entirely self-inflicted. Our state thinks of the poor as objects of charity, as if they have no agency of their own."

"Bharati’s Kuyil Paattu doesn’t offer lessons. It’s simply a remarkable illustration of the poet’s private voice."

Indian right-wing- "spectacularly self-defeating"

Dr.Anantha has very interesting article in the Mint on Indian liberals and their stand on right-wing arguments on public policy in India. 

While in the piece he quotes a very interesting para from a recent article by Dr.Mehta, before placing his arguments. That para is really worth to read, re-read and ponder. Here is that para:

  • “The problem with much of the right-of-centre economic discourse in India is threefold. First, it does not have much of a sense of history. Has any modern society evolved without robust welfare protection? … Second, the right was caught in its own bad faith. On one hand, it wanted to critique entitlements and rights per se, on the other hand, it wanted to embrace direct cash transfers as an alternative. So in the end its arguments against redistribution ended up sounding more like lawyerly bad faith than a principled position… The right has not managed to link its purely economic arguments with an effective moral framework. Third, there was a spectacularly self-defeating political language that smacked of elitism... It is cute to call the bill a vote security bill... But what are we saying in saying this? That politicians responding to what they think voters will go for is a bad thing? ... If the left can be accused of sometimes doing the poor harm in the name of speaking for them, the right can match it by its subtle show of contempt for the ordinary voter. The right will need to change its game considerably.”

A bit from Dr.Anantha's piece:
  • "India’s current finance minister, when he was in the Tamil Maanila Congress, used to write a column inThuglak, a Tamil political fortnightly, explaining market economics to Tamil readers. He ceased making the case for liberal economics long ago. Another reformer took the nom de plume Kautilya and used to educate the readers of the periodical India Today on liberal economics and pro-market policymaking. Now, in the UPA government, he helped shut down mining with his environment laws and now he threatens to stop the future of manufacturing in India with his land acquisition law."
On both the cases, I completely agree!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Professor Ronald Coase, passed away at 102

Dr.Ronald Coase, was perhaps the only economics professor who lived such a long years upto 102 rather its more than a 101 economics. He passed away on September 2, 2013. He won the Nobel Memorial Prize for Economics in the year 1991 for his work on "for his discovery and clarification of the significance of transaction costs and property rights for the institutional structure and functioning of the economy".

I am a long admirer of his work on property rights. Prof Coase was also admirer of Prof F A Hayek's idea of choices in currencies and against of monopoly legal tender. 

Read this paper titled "Other things equal: the so called coase theorem".

His very opening line of his Nobel lecture was very candid. He begun by saying:

  • "In my long life I have known some great economists but I have never counted myself among their number nor walked in their company. I have made no innovations in high theory. My contribution to economics has been to urge the inclusion in our analysis of features of the economic system so obvious that,..."

"in a 60-year career he wrote only about a dozen significant papers and used little or no mathematics, yet his impact on his discipline was profound."

Here are some obituaries links:

The life and legacy of Ronald Coase
Ronald Coase : 1910 – 2013

Nobelist Who Studied Corporations
Remembering Ronald Coase
Ronald Coase has died, but his individualist dogma is everywhere

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

New parrot and its feathers

I read almost everything possible about Professor Raghuram Rajan, the new RBI Governor in the Indian media of all kinds.

I have also followed his popular writings on Indian monetary system for about a decade. I strongly believe that he can do better job and further the reform process initiated by monetary stalwarts like Dr.C.Rangarajan during his period in the RBI.

When Prof Rajan came to India for joining in Indian government, there was news item which says "Raghuram Rajan fit in quite comfortably at the University of Chicago. Like other free-marketers, the Indian-born economist and professor at Chicago’s Booth School of Business was inspired by Friedrich Hayek, the Austrian thinker." More here.

An Indian economist said recently that "There is little doubt that however objective an economist may try to be, his ideology is shaped by his own experiences and environment. For example, Friedrich Hayek strongly believed that Keynesian monetary stimulus can only lead to “roaring inflation”.

A bit from his recent works:

"the idea of eliminating all testing, and offering all students a social pass is a disastrous idea"

"Why not stay with the devil you know…Of course, those who are truly disillusioned"

"Economic theory suggests governments in the periphery cannot control the real exchange rate by fixing the nominal rate."

"how much of God’s work he is doing goes awry"

More you can find his works from here.

Niranjan in Mint has very good reaction over Prof.Rajana's statement on taking over RBI today. The firstpost also has detail musing about his speech.