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November 1, 2008

Some comments on Shantanu”s blog…

Filed under: election, politics, social change — neosurya @ 10:28

Shanthanu has a blog about current affairs in India. He revaled his identity and it makes for interesting reading:
http://satyameva-jayate.org/2008/10/30/who-is-b-shantanu. I am mirroring some comments that I had written there.

@ Sanjeev’s comment: “I completely detest anyone who claims to live first for their country.”

I agree and disagree with this. There is a time and place for every shade; Life is gray scale, binary only looks good on circuits. I agree in the sense that there is no place for such feelings while designing policies. When the seeds of our political structure were being sown, the predominant frame of thought was “Country first”. The shadow of such feelings has lead to a very shabby framework in terms of accountability, remuneration, and electoral process. For example, “Country is first for every politician, defence person etc etc and hence they will be expected to work for peanuts”. On the other hand, if we completely let go of “Country first” feelings among all citizen, you run the risk of creating a loss of reference for the common man, and a geographic disconnect. There is a necessity to have “Country first” feelings among every citizen. We need to get to a stage where every citizen believes that country first is equivalent to creating a better tomorrow for himself and his family.

@ your comment “you can help by becoming financially independent”

It is nice to suggest/recommend financial independence before an individual gets into politics. However, it is very dangerous for political parties to allow someone to work for them for free. Parties and policies have to draw strict lines of what is voluntary and what is not. Else sooner or later there will be a day when the free-loader will be driven to an ulterior need. Remuneration, accountability, and punishment go hand in hand. If I am self-sufficient enough, there will be a day when I will not perform. To quote from the niti-shastra “Discontented brahmanas, contented kings, shy prostitutes, and immodest housewives are ruined.”


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