2ndlook

China’s solution to corruption

Posted in China, Current Affairs, History, India, Media, politics by Anuraag Sanghi on June 15, 2011
Two birds with one stone - Underpaid government employee of the past; and glib rejection of corruption charges. (Cartoon by RK Laxman). Click for larger image.

Two birds with one stone - Underpaid government employee of the past; and glib rejection of corruption charges. (Cartoon by RK Laxman). Click for larger image.

China believes it is a corrupt nation

China has a big ‘corruption’ problem. Apart from Western media reports, China’s own media confirms,

Corruption has long haunted the ruling Communist Party of China. The Party’s General Secretary, Hu Jintao, once said that “determined punishment and effective prevention of corruption concerns… the existence of the Party”. (via Former official executed by lethal injection).

A report carried by Time magazine, says that

The current level of corruption in China is systematic and widespread. It is so entrenched that honest officials are now part of a minority that risks being left behind. It is a system where corruption is the rule rather than the exception. According to the Chinese professor Hu Xing Do, 99% of the corrupt officials will never be caught. The few who do get caught are simply considered unlucky, and even if their punishment is typically heavy, the dissuasive effect remains minimal.

They have an answer

The Chinese answer to corruption has been death penalty. Liberally, widely, explicitly. A bullet in the head. Finito. Finito. Fini. Ände. Revestimento. Vuoden. Eind. Ende. final de la muerte. отделка . Τέλος.

That is the Chinese answer. To further ram home the point (in case the bullet does not do the trick), these executions are photographed, televised, published in newspapers, covered by the media.

Cant miss it.

Everyone must get equal opportunity at corruption. (Cartoon by Kirish Bhatt; courtesy - bamulahija.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

Everyone must get equal opportunity at corruption. (Cartoon by Kirish Bhatt; courtesy - bamulahija.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

Strike Hard

In 1983, Deng Xiaoping initiated what were called ‘Strike-Hard’ campaigns. Based on traditional imperial Chinese attitudes and wisdom, apparent from

traditional sayings like “a life for a life,” “killing one to warn a hundred,” “killing a chicken to warn a monkey” are embodiments of these retributive and deterrent beliefs.

Deng, who initiated the strike-hard campaigns in light of the rampant crimes, commented that the authorities could not be soft on crime, and the death sentence was “a necessary educative tool”

This thinking continues in China

The notion of “returning like for like” is rooted in China. The majority of the public could not accept that some murderers could go free after 10 years’ imprisonment.

It is believed in modern China that,

death penalty does have a strong deterrent effect. Studies do suggest that one execution deters five to 18 potential murderers from committing the ultimate crime. Though there is no detailed study on the death penalty’s deterrent effect on corruption cases, it can be expected to play a similar role. If corruption is struck off the capital punishment list in such a situation, there is a fear that all hell would break loose. (via Opinion: Corruption has to stay capital crime).

From the Deng’s initial ‘Strike-Hard’ campaign in 1983, crimes that qualify for death penalty has increased from 32 to 68 – ranging from corruption to embezzlement, smuggling and tax evasion.

The State has simply public appetite for vengeance, killings and torture. (Cartoon from chinadaily.com.cn/).

The State has simply public appetite for vengeance, killings and torture. (Cartoon from chinadaily.com.cn/).

Simply lovin’ it

What do the Chinese people think of these killings, shootings and executions?

Public opinion in China is rooted in the eye-for-an-eye and a tooth-for-a-tooth idea of justice. Efforts by the Chinese authorities to reduce categories of crimes for which death penalty can be awarded, sparked suspicions that ‘abolishing the death penalty for economic-related and non-violent offences (was) a tool to help privileged officials involved in corruption crimes escape capital punishment’ (text in parentheses supplied).

Chinese public opinion and reactions borders on being vengeful. Pictures on the Chinese internet, of the execution of Wang Shouxin, a woman government official from northern province of Heilongjiang scored more than a million hits. In another case,

Hearing the news of Wen’s execution, some local residents lit firecrackers or held banners that read “Wen’s execution, Chongqing’s stability” at the gates of the Municipal High People’s Court and the municipal Communist Party Committee. (via Former official executed by lethal injection).

Time magazine reports of the Chinese ‘appetite’ for such killings and executions. Even as China tops the world in the number of executions and killings, there is

endless “public demand” for this kind of punishment and (by) the surging popular anger, it would seem that there is actually not enough of it. Of all the criminal cases in China, those involving corrupt officials sentenced to death arouse the greatest interest. The morbid examples abound: from the public cheering for the recent death sentences. People in China viscerally hate corruption and are reluctant to see the death penalty dropped. (text in parentheses supplied).

Was China always like this.

During the time when Buddhism at its peak in China, in early Tang dynasty (618 AD – 907 AD), ‘death penalty was abolished for a time during the reign of Tai Zong emperor (627-650), one of the Tang dynasty’s most admired rulers.’

Chinese plans and measures

The Chinese do understand, that these killings and executions are not the answer.

If cutting hands, legs, heads, was the solution, every Islamic shariat-country would have been free of crime. China has been killing people since 1983, for nearly 30 years, now. Chinese corruption should have reduced. With the largest prisoner-population in the world, with the biggest secret-service, police force, the US should have been crime-free. After a sustained levels of executions at a historic-high, China still believes, it has a corruption problem.

In fact, Time magazine goes further and announces, ‘China is the global leader for the number of corrupt officials who are sentenced to death, and actually executed each year- carrying out 90% of (the executions) worldwide. Though another report by Time Magazine gives a varying estimate that China ‘puts to death more people than the rest of the world combined — about 70% of the global total in 2008.’ In 2001, Amnesty International recorded and confirmed ‘more than 4,000 death sentences and nearly 2,500 executions in China.’ Chinese authorities do not release execution statistics, ‘but rights groups estimate that they number from about 5,000 to 12,000 annually.’

Is the Chinese Government happy with these killings and executions? Using Western models, ideas and thinking, the Chinese look to the West for solutions.

For the first time in 30 years, China’s top legislature proposed this week to reduce the number of crimes punishable by execution. The proposal, largely symbolic, has drawn renewed attention to China’s controversial death-penalty policy, under which 68 crimes are punishable by death.

13 nonviolent economic crimes — ranging from smuggling relics and endangered animals to faking VAT receipts — have been dropped in a pending amendment to China’s capital-punishment law. Convicts above the age of 75 will also be eligible for the exemption. If passed, the revised law could slash the total number of capital crimes in the country by up to 20%. (via China Reviews Death Penalty for Nonviolent Crimes – TIME).

For one, Chinese authorities seem quite amenable to adopting the Western labels of developing country and increased ‘supervision’ as the models to go with.

“As a developing country, China’s current food and drug safety situation is not very satisfactory because supervision of food and drug safety started late. Its foundation is weak so the supervision of food and drug safety is not easy,” (via Former SFDA chief executed for corruption).

Another senior government official echoed similar sentiments

“As for the death penalty, different countries have different situations and different cultural backgrounds,” (said) Gan Yisheng, head of the party’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.

“We still execute people who have committed serious economic crimes on consideration of China’s national condition and cultural background.” (via Execution defended as graft trial nears – The Standard).

After 30 years of sustained, public executions, all that the Chinese Government seems to have done is created a public appetite for more such killings and executions.

Justice that seems to have death and killings as its sole weapon. (Cartoon by Clay Bennett; courtesy - claybennett.com). Click for larger image.

Justice that seems to have death and killings as its sole weapon. (Cartoon by Clay Bennett; courtesy - claybennett.com). Click for larger image.

An end in sight?

How do the Chines see a solution to this situation?

There is considerable disbelief in ‘political re-education’ – a hall-mark of Maoist system of criminal ‘reform’.

If political education is the answer to rampant corruption, then all the propaganda courses we are constantly exposed to would have solved the problem by now. While so many people are “beheaded,” executives at all levels are still determined to brave death by trying to (benefit from) corruption (via Blood, Justice and Corruption: Why the Chinese Love Their Death Penalty – TIME).

Press, elections, democracy?

More Western ideas are more acceptable in China.

It is thus obvious that the reason for corruption lies elsewhere, in the fact that there isn’t enough control and supervision over public power, and in the lack of democratic elections and freedom of the press. (via Blood, Justice and Corruption: Why the Chinese Love Their Death Penalty – TIME).

Some of China’s commentators believe that

It is also time to rope the mass media into this war. The Zhejiang provincial committee of the Communist Party has made a good start by expressly empowering its local media to scrutinize and keep an eye on public officials.

Educational ads should be telecast on TV, broadcast on the radio and published in newspapers, something that Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption has been doing for a long time. (via Opinion: Corruption has to stay capital crime).

If democracy and free press were the answers, why is corruption so rampant in India. Not to mention the West?

People caught up between the State and gangs protected by the State. (Cartoon by Morparia). Click for larger image.

People caught up between the State and gangs protected by the State. (Cartoon by Morparia). Click for larger image.

Echoes from India

China-style killing-and shooting has some admirers of in India. If the Chinese were successful at curbing corruption, it would be worth studying their approach. Have the Chines succeeded?

Anna Hazare, Baba Ramdev have captured the media’s attention – and possibly a significant part of ‘middle-India’ also. What Anna-Baba are proposing to impose is a ‘Hindu’ shariat in India. Cut of hands, legs, heads. Flog people. Nail them and jail them. The works. How can India remain backward?

Chetan Bhagat, an admirer of Chinese style anti-corruption campaign, and another darling of ‘middle-India’ has become a Hindu Shariat supporter. Since powerful politicians cannot be ’embossed’ or ‘tattooed’, Chetan Bhagat wrote on his forearm – मेरा नेता चोर है mera neta chor hai (My leader is a thief). He writes,

Contrast (India) with China where the punishment for the corrupt can be death by firing squad. Not only that, the family of the convict gets a bill for the bullets, just to emphasise the point that no one steals the nation’s money. (via Of Ravages And Kings – Times Of India).

(Cartoonist - Kirk Anderson on the Enron Case). Click for larger image.

(Cartoonist - Kirk Anderson on the Enron Case). Click for larger image.

Root of corruption

The source of corruption is power. Raw, unbridled power. That the modern State enjoys. More laws, more corruption, more crime. More police, more crime.

Any steps (like the Lok Pal) that empowers the State with more power will increase corruption. Reducing powers of the State reduces corruption. By eliminating monopoly, the Indian telecom sector saw a massive decrease in corruption. The opaque Indian railway ticketing system of the past encouraged corruption. That has been eliminated by bringing in transparency, through computerization. Like this Chinese commentator says

To tackle corruption at the roots, prevention is more important than punishment. China needs to thoroughly review its institutional system for preventing and combating corruption and for identifying and plugging loopholes. Corruption in many cases has been the result of power abuse. So we have to think of ways to curb such powers. (via Opinion: Corruption has to stay capital crime).

The three main areas where the State comes in is in land, wealth (as in gold), and people-to-people interaction. By injecting itself in the middle, the State creates abuse of power opportunities – leading to corruption. By arrogating the power of law and justice to itself, the State creates injustice. The end of corruption will be systemic change. End of Desert Bloc ideas. भारत-तंत्र Bharat-tantra has delivered corruption free regimes for centuries – and can do it again.

People get ready. Time for भारत-तंत्र Bharat-tantra.

India – The Shashthipoorthi Purana

Posted in Business, Current Affairs, History, India, Media, politics, Religion, Satire by Anuraag Sanghi on August 14, 2010

60 years of the Indian Republic

On 26, January, 2010, as per Christian calendar, and 11, Shukla Paksh, Magh, 2066, of Vikram Samvat, my family discovered an ancient Sanskrit manuscript – called the  षष्टिपूर्ति पुराण Shasthipoorthi-purana. Buried underground in an earthen pot, we stumbled upon it, as we were readying to hoist the Indian flag on Republic day.

An important day in some parts of India, षष्टिपूर्ति Shasthipoorthi, is celebrated when a man has achieved 60 years of age – and is now considered wise. Coincidentally,  we discovered the षष्टिपूर्ति पुराण Shasthipoorthi-purana manuscript also on the षष्टिपूर्ति Shasthipoorthi year of the Indian Republic!

Sixty years of the Indian Republic!  Any wiser …

Strange tale

I have been studying the षष्टिपूर्ति पुराण Shasthipoorthi-purana manuscript for the last six months. It tells a strange tale – written some 800 years ago, and traces a futuristic eight hundred year war against Asuras. I have been able to easily read the last chapter which I am giving below. Easily, because षष्टिपूर्ति पुराण Shasthipoorthi-purana intriguingly predicts and uses English words – even before these words were invented by the British. All other puranas are about the past – and are not futuristic. But this one …

This last chapter of the षष्टिपूर्ति पुराण Shasthipoorthi-purana tells us about a hundred year battle (1840-1940) and the defeat of the armies of Raktasuras. Interestingly, this 100 year battle coincides with the death of Ranjit Singh (1839) and the escape of Subhash Chandra Bose (January 1941). The Raktasuras, (reminds me of the British) were descendants of two brothers – Yavanasura (Greeks) and Romasura (Romans).

Victory celebrations

As the people of Bharat-varsha celebrated the ‘victory’ over the armies of Raktasura, they did not see how the retreating soldiers from Raktasura were scattering seeds. Of a fast spreading poisonous, desert tree – मरुः विष-वृक्षः. This मायावी mayavi tree, bears sweet tasting, colorful, fragrant fruits. Highly addictive, all the fruits from this desert tree dull the mind, yet make us feel powerful. Also, resentful against those who stop us from eating these fruits.

The mirage of democracy!

The mirage of democracy!

Similar to the mango fruits in appearance, the people of Jambudwipa and Bharat-varsha quickly got addicted to this मायावी mayavi fruit. The people of Bharat-ah appointed gardeners and forest-guards to grow and get a continuous supply these fruits.

The gardens where this मायावी mayavi trees are cultivated, gardeners trained are called Universities, colleges, institutes, research centres, etc. in English.

These मायावी mayavi fruits have deceptive names. As people gorged on these poisonous fruits, they became sick – and wanted more of this fruit.

The purana had some interesting names for these fruits.

The fruits of democracy

One fruit is democracy – which lulls us into a stupor of inaction, while it gives us an illusion of being powerful. Instead of being involved in our societies, localities and communities on a daily basis, it wakes us up once in five years at election time. After five years of stupor and laziness, this fruit makes us talk loudly, rudely.

And we go to sleep again.

The fruit of democracy also corrupts our mind. Instead of focusing on the behavior of  rulers and politicians, it diverts our minds to replace one bad ruler with another. It creates a collusive polity where bad rulers conspire with each other, against us.

This fruit of democracy is a strange poison.

Merchants of poison fruits

Instead of chasing out the vendors of these poisonous fruits from the bazaar, this purana predicts we will become supporters of these vendors. Even fight with each other, predicted this purana. This manuscript got the names of the vendors right, also.

This purana captures the stark choice for the people of Bharat-varsha. A liberalizing Kawngress (Congress?) is better than a globalizing Bhajpaa (BJP!) which is the only hope against the regressive Vaampanthis (Communists).

The Vaampanthis are such a bad choice, who will sell us to the Chinese. Instead, the purana shows a ‘tough choice for the people. Choose Kawngress that will sell us to the Europeans. Better is the Bhajpaa who will get us the best price from the Americans.

Can this deluge of advertiser-pays content be handled?

Can this deluge of advertiser-pays content be handled?

मायावी Mayavi religion

The other मायावी mayavi fruit that they are selling us is the fruit of religion. A ‘secular’ wants the people of Bharat-ah to accept any religion. Bhajpaa, representing the hardline, conservative, rightwing wants the people to choose The One Better religion – Islam, Christianity or Hinduism. The Vaampanthis wants all of us to change our religion – and follow their All New, Godless Religion, dominated by priests, who worship themselves.

The षष्टिपूर्तिShasthipoorthi Purana gives a blunt prediction. People will fight over principles of adharm. Gurus will be made into gods.  This kind of adharm will take the place and in name of dharma. Anti-vedic beliefs will be promoted as Vedic derivations. Yantra (machines), tantra (technology) and mantra (formulae) will become more important than gyaan (‘true’ knowledge), says this Purana.

In India, in the last 60 years

Let us see what has happened in India in the last 60 years.

The 60 years of capacity building, under a socialist blue-print that Nehru proposed, which the Bombay Plan endorsed and the West ‘helped’ India to implement are winding down. The economic reforms of the last 20 years have diluted the excesses of State control.

These excesses are now being replaced by an ‘efficient’ private enterprise. Business is the new glamour sector. TV soaps now lionize Singhanias and Viranis – yesterday’s filmi villains. Meet the new set of Indian oligarchs. Highly feted, internationally acclaimed, these oligarchs are expanding their economic empires by creating ’employment’.

Big fish eat small fish …

These oligarchs ‘outsource’ large parts of their business – much like Japanese supply chains. These small businesses are closely tied to the ‘mother-ship’. These SMEs (small and medium enterprises) will be the first to pay the price of business downturns or reverses. And the last to benefit from any business upticks.

In short, stop dreaming about an entrepreneurial India – the carrot of an ‘efficient’ private sector India that is being dangled in front of us. Instead, the three layers of another extractive economic model are likely to be oligarchs, these buffer SMEs, and employees. Instead of ‘inefficient’ public sector, we will now be ruled by an extractive oligarchy – closely tied to ruling elite.

Bound and gagged

The ruling elite and the oligarchs will in turn ‘help’ India to ‘integrate’ India with global system. Deliver us bound, gagged and powerless to international cartels. Oil, food, retail, entertainment, banking & currency, technology cartels.

He who pays the piper calls the tune ...!

He who pays the piper calls the tune ...!

We, the Consumer, with a capital ‘c’ will get a vast ‘choice’ – like in computers. You can buy Acer, Compaq, Dell, HP, IBM, Toshiba – anything at all. Only one thing – they all run on Windows and Intel architecture.

And to satisfy our hurt of years of gouging, Bill Gates will now dominate charity.

Book Review – Operation Red Lotus

Posted in European History, Gold Reserves, History, India, Media, politics, Religion by Anuraag Sanghi on March 18, 2010

Reverberations – 150 years later

The 1857 war in India, is something that remained an enigma for the last 150 years. For “the public was at the time and for years to come saturated to an astonishing degree with lurid accounts of the uprising, which became the subject of countless sermons, novels, plays and poems, and about which more than eighty novels were written, six appearing in the “peak” year of 1896 alone”.

So, I too was vaguely thrilled to receive a draft copy of the Operation Red Lotus (Red Lotus) by Parag Tope, some 7 months ago. Over the next 2-3 weeks, I went through the book. The first time with more enthusiasm than objectivity. Then came the time to take a 2ndlook look.

This book was an interesting experience. For one it represents yet another attempt to clean up Indian history of colonial detritus.

Answers to some obvious questions

Western /colonial historiography has typically dismissed the Anglo-Indian War of 1857 (Parag Tope’s nomenclature) as a Sepoy Mutiny. Post-colonial Indian historians have been equally guilty of another crime – of dismissing this War as a subaltern war, playing into the hands of Western dismissive-ness. This is something that becomes obvious after reading Red Lotus. Brought on a staple diet of colonial history refurbished as Indian history, to get some bearings was a welcome development.

After all a 18-36 month War that reverberated across the world could not have been a leaderless, cashless, food-less, resource-less war. Red Lotus gives us some vital information on that – which Indian history books don’t! The chapatis and lotus petals insight is unnervingly plausible.

The official account of the Anglo-Indian War of 1857 leaves a number of loose ends. This book takes those loose ends and unravels the official account itself – to leave it in tatters.

How was the 1857 war important

A valuable focus in the book, was how the British backed away from their proselytizing efforts. After and due  to this War.

Not due to any innate goodness in the British hearts, or any ‘religious’ and ideological ‘liberalism’ that the modern-day Western narrative trots out. The triad of freedoms that Parag Tope delineates in Red Lotus, are an important element that defines the Indic polity system – defined as भारत्तंत्र in 2ndlook posts.

Drawing on the correspondence between Hartog and Gandhiji, as pointed out elsewhere, in 2ndlook, Red Lotus also has an excellent section on how the Indian education system was destroyed by British policy and design.

Caste of characters

Apart from the Anglo-Indian War of 1857, there were more than 75 battles, skirmishes, revolts, mutinies, involving thousands, up to lakhs of Indians, across India. And more than double that many conspiracies, plots, hold-ups, explosions, bombings, which were not organized. These more than 200 violent actions have been completely glossed over by post-colonial India’s historians. Obviously, more than 200 incidents of violent opposition to British misrule over 150 years (1800-1947) deserves better treatment by official historians. Especially, the people who were ‘behind’ this.

This is another area where Red Lotus scores. Its cast of characters are real people and have been treated objectively. Of course to readers of the 2ndlook, Parag Tope’s views are not new or strange. But to anyone else, like me initially, it was an intellectual challenge. Because Red Lotus does not spoon feed.

For instance, Baijabai Shinde and Vishnubhat Godse (his account in Marathi strangely is hardly known, and usually ignored). My favourite though is Azimullah Khan, a ‘secret agent’ who ‘devoured’ English ladies, hob-nobbed with the enemy’s-enemy and surveyed the enemy’s war operations in Crimea. Azimullah Khan, other sources say, bought a French printing press and confirmed the viability of the Anglo-Indian War!

Interestingly, the one character dealt with rather tersely (balanced, if you will) is Tatya Tope himself. Tatya Tope seems, in comparison, to be cut from a normal revolutionary cloth in Red Lotus. No mean achievement, this.

To Indians raised on an official narrative of caste-religion matrix, this cast of characters is refreshing. Unlike other texts and narratives that have given a brief or a cursory mention of these characters. How could a caste-ridden, divided and oppressive society mount more than 200 actions – against British ‘deliverance’ and ‘enlightenment’.

Red Lotus does not, for instance, get defensive about the ‘rape’ and killing of English women. Most narratives do not even question the rape and murder of British women stories. In fact,

there was no evidence that British women were raped… (but) this was the immediate and lasting assumption, and a great many of the novelizations of the event, were “essentially pornographic” as they detailed the lascivious thoughts of Indians preparing to “tear and mangle” the white limbs of English women “in unspeakable tortures”.(from WTC, September 11; Indian “Mutiny,” 1857:  Two Studies in the Psychology of Embattled Superpower By Diane Simmons; ellipsis and text in parenthesis supplied).

The international context

The book also brings out some parts of the international context. For instance how the 1857 financial crisis in the US was possibly triggered by mass redemptions from UK, to fight this war! Or how troops meant for China were diverted to India. Or the huge amounts of drug trade that fuelled the ‘Rise of Britain’. In comparison, the Cali cartel seems like small change, Tope points out. Or the official licensing of piracy by England – and other European powers.

Too often , Indian history is boxed into a small context, which makes it difficult to understand the bigger questions. One question which this book does not completely answer – at least directly, is why did India have to struggle financially to fight a just war, and Britain has money pouring out of its ears, to impose its tyranny on India.

The missing links

So, why did India lose the war? Tope in Red Lotus has marshalled excellent research to show it was British brutality on the hapless Indians that disarmed the leaders of the Anglo-Indian War! The drug trade and piracy are another part of the answer.

The bigger answer is (as per 2ndlook) slavery, genocide in Americas and Australia. And the capture of land, wealth and gold from these lands that fuelled the rise of the West – and why India could not match those resources. So to say, the Country Model itself. But then, that would have unfairly expanded the scope of the book – claim the writers!

Possibly!

This was the other disappointment. I had expected (unrealistically and in a lighter vein), that after all, who better than the Tope family to tell us what ‘actually’ happened to the missing leaders – though Red Lotus does give an eye-witness account about the end of Tatya Tope.

As the Anglo-Indian War of 1857, continued and wound down, the three leaders, Nana Sahib, Tatya Tope, and Feroz Shah disappeared. No one knew what happened to them.

It is usually accepted (in Red Lotus also) that the man who was ‘executed’ by the Colonial Raj, as Tatya Tope, was a straw figure. Unlike Red Lotus, it is difficult to believe that Tatya Tope died in battle – without being recognized, by eager Britishers or thousands of his loyal lieutenants. Like other leaders of the War, Tatya Tope’s life has many endings.

The fate of the leaders – Nana Sahib, Azimullah Khan, Tatya Tope, Feroz Shah et al.

Enduring mystery this!

Between a rock and hard place

Posted in Desert Bloc, History, India, politics by Anuraag Sanghi on January 13, 2010

Modern Indian State has acquired Desert-Bloc-Platonic-Confucian authoritarian principles of State as parens patriae

Hitler-Gandhi meter

Hitler-Gandhi meter

Gandhi was more violent than Hitler. (It’s crucial to see violence which is done repeatedly to keep the things the way they are) …

… Though Gandhi didn’t support killing, his actions helped the British imperialists to stay in India longer. This is something Hitler never wanted. Gandhi didn’t do anything to stop the way the British empire functioned here.

For me, that is a problem. (via ‘First they called me a joker, now I am a dangerous thinker’ – All That Matters – Sunday TOI – Home – The Times of India).

Run … hide … but you can’t turn your back

Slávoj Zizek can’t (presumably) support Hitler. A status quo-ist like Gandhiji, is unacceptable to Slávoj Zizek. His dilemma! Having to choose between two दुरातान्त्रिक duratantrik systems (like socialism or communism), Slávoj Zizek’s is having a difficult time. Slávoj Zizek’s views are, to say the least, provocative, forcing you to re-think.

The world faces a Hobson's choice today. You can have any colour you want - as long as it is black. (Cartoon by RK Laxman; Courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

The world faces a Hobson's choice today. You can have any colour you want - as long as it is black. (Cartoon by RK Laxman; Courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

India itself does not know the place that भारत्तंत्र Bharat-tantra (Indic political system) has, means or stands for in the history of the world. The history of the world, till about 8 AD,  is basically torn between दुरातंत्र, duratantra, (meaning vile political systems) versus सुरातंत्र suratantra (equitable political systems) systems. भारत्तंत्र Bharat-tantra (Indic political system) was highly respected in the ancient world – went into decline from 8th century to 18th century.

Glimpses into the past

Property rights India, till the 12th century, vested property rights with the producer, upto the advent of the Islamic iqtadari system. The 200 years foreign, Islāmic rule in India, by Turko-Persian offshoots, changed Indian property holding patterns. The main Islamic dynasties, of the Middle East /West Asia, the Abbasids and Ummayads, never directly, attempted any military campaigns against India.

Slavery (distinguished by capture and recapture, buying and selling, state protection, ‘free’ slave markets) were unknown in Indic regions.

Quo Vadis (where are you going) …

The political constructs of the West have hit a wall – and there is no way, but down! Since the West is busy hiding elephants in the room, the need for a different political ideology remains unaddressed. The development of the four Western political systems – i.e. Feudalism, Capitalism, Socialism and Communism, is related to two factors. Property (and loot of property) and slavery – the two elephants in the room of Western history.

Gandhiji supporting the British in South Africa

Gandhiji supporting the British in South Africa (Gandhi, middle row 5th from left with stretcher bearers of the Indian Ambulance Corps - 1899-1900).

The costs of the Western welfare State is going up – not down, not away. Welfare bills are getting more ambitious – and the domestic lobbies want more ambitious schemes. Western  economies have become isolated, high cost protected by barriers and stockades.

Completely ignored by ‘modern’ Western education system, (which India also blindly follows), the Indian political theory and its application have been largely forgotten in India too.

Platonic-Confucian axis

The axis of Confucian-Platonic authoritarian, ‘wise’ rulers, was the alternate model for the world. Property rights remained with less than o.1% of the people. Under the CRER principle, (cuius regio, eius religio, meaning whose land, his religion; CRER) even personal religious beliefs of the individual were subject to State approval, as per law.

The West scorns the Chinese one party rule. How does one more, collusive party in the national polity, in a ‘democratic set-up, become the paragon of political virtue. Two-party democratic polity is just a more polished and conniving way of exercising the same authority – in a more invisible manner? In India, with more than 70 crore voters, the winning party got less than 13 crore votes and the final difference between the winning party and the second largest party. Approximately 5 crore voters. This leaves people with little or no choice – much like the choice between one-party ‘dictatorship’ and two-party ‘democracy’.

Now compare

The only exception to this was the Indic system of polity – where property rights were vested with the user, justice was decentralized (did any Indic king dispense justice?), religion was maya and dharma was supreme. The modern Indian State has acquired the Desert-Bloc-Platonic-Confucian authoritarian principles of the State as parens patriae. So, the power of the Indic ideas is something that India seems to have completely forgotten, missed and lost!!

One party dictatorship or two-party democracy. What's the difference? One more collusive political party!

One party dictatorship or two-party democracy. What's the difference? One more collusive political party! (Cartoonist - Matt Bors; Posted on August 4, 2008; Cartoon Source and Courtesy - cagle.com). Click for larger image.

Is there an Indic political system at all? Simple leads …

  1. What is Sanskritic word for slave? Or what does the Indian narrative call Slave owners?
  2. Why do traditional traders resist taxes even today? The biggest tax offenders of modern India are the traditional ‘marwari’ business man. Why?
  3. What triggered the persecution of the Roma Gypsies in Europe?
  4. How did the Roma Gypsies start the Church Reformation in Europe?
  5. Why does India have the lowest crime rates and incarceration rates in the world? Yet was behind the biggest crime wave in history?
  6. Why and how did India build the world’s largest private reserves of gold? Without loot, luck or slaves?
  7. From the carbon-dated 3000 BC Indus Valley to the India in 2000 AD, how could India resist cultural and military invasions?
  8. How did India emerge as software service economy in a short 15 years?
  9. India is today a counterpoint in softpower – in TV, cinema,publishing, newspapers, et al! How come?
  10. While the Western world is going public sector, how come India continues down the private sector path?

Country Model Of The West

Posted in Current Affairs, European History, Feminist Issues, Gold Reserves, History, Media, Uncategorized by Anuraag Sanghi on February 7, 2008

Chinese R & D SpendsThe Myth Of Western Technology

In the last 50 years, after WW2, the rise of Japan, Korea and China in manufacturing and technology and the Indian software success, have taken away the sheen from the myth of Western technological prowess. Post colonial revisions in history are eroding the euro-centric version of biased history.

Failed Westernisations

For some time, the easy way out seemed to be ‘copycat’ westernisation. One of the first ‘copycat’ states was China. China, led by Sun Yat Sen, (original name Sun Wen and started calling himself Yat-sen; Chinese call him Sun Zhongshan), was the first major power which tried going down the western path. The Japanese invasion of Manchuria sounded the death knell of the Chinese Republic and Monarchy.

China – Mao & Sun

Sun Yat Sen decided to westernise and make China into a Republican democracy. Chinese were made to cut their queue – pleated hair braids. This diktat was enforced in 20 days time. Sun Yatsen and later Mao Ze Dong made the Chinese change their dress styles too. The effect of this westernisation – an enduring sense of being followers. The Chinese add a western name to their Chinese one – Michael Tang, Bruce Lee, Jerry Yang, Tommy Tang, Tommy Chi.

In Hong Kong and Macao, white tourists are royalty. Chinese companies routinely parade White, Western investors – and the Chinese investors follow. Western marriage ceremony, Chinese couples think, is very romantic. The Christian Church wedding is common in China.

Not that Indians are too far behind – consider Steve Sanghi, Paul Parmar, or the best of them all, Bobby Jindal.

Mustafa Kemal AtaturkAtaturk’s Turkey

Turkey – led by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was the next ‘copycat’ attempt at westernisation. After WW1, the victorious allied powers dismantled the Ottoman Empire. Turkey was reduced to a rump state.

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk was ‘installed’ by Western powers. Thereafter, Turkey has lurched from crisis to another. Post WW2, it has mostly been ruled by military dictatorships. From an arbiter in Europe, it has become a supplicant, begging for entry into EU. Instead of the queue in China – it was beards in Turkey. Atatürk enforced a new dress code on the hapless Turks – and the traditional fez was banned. Stop wearing the fez or else …

Russia – Westernising Since Peter The Great

Peter the Great, (of the Naryshkin family) co-ruler of Russia, (along with Ivan of the Miloslavsky family) ruled from 1682-1725. For more than 40 years, his agenda was to create Russia in the Western mould. His travels to Germany, Britain, Sweden (before becoming a Tsar) shaped this agenda.

One of the first things he did after becoming a Tsar was to ask his boyars (Russian nobility) to shave their beards! Catherine The Great continued this during her reign from 1762-1796. For the next 125 years, Russia vacillated between a medieval country and modern western country.

Now, the imprisoned oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky takes pains to show how Russia is a western nation and should be democracy. Khodorkovsky, who at one time nursed political ambition, says, “…I’m convinced that Russia is a European country, it’s a country with democratic traditions …”

How Every US Dollar Is SpentThe Anglo-Saxon Country Business Model

These Turkish and Chinese failures down the western garden path is to mistake the trees for the forest. There are five major features of the Anglo-Saxon country model which these countries did not copy. Not that I am recommending that they be copied.

The Use Of Corporations

The use of the British East India Company was an eye opener for the rest of the West. After Vasco da Gama’s discovery of trade route to India (for Europeans) round Africa, the British were the first of the block – with the English East India Company formed in the 1600.

The Dutch started soon after with the Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (Dutch East India Co.) in 1602. The Danish Opperhoved initially started in 1616 and was reborn in 1732, as Asiatisk Kompagni. The Portuguese organised themselves as chartered company in 1628. The French came with the French East India Co. in 1664. The Swedes joined the rat race in 1731 with Svenska Ostindiska Companiet. The Italians came in as the Genoa East India companies. The Hanseatic League had its own operations.

In North America, the Hudson Bay Company (Compagnie de la Baie d’Hudson in French) was given a Royal Charter in 1670 by Charles II. It practically owned Canada when the Dominion of Canada was formed – and is the oldest surviving company in North America. It monopoly ended only in 1870 – a few years after the Indian Independence War of 1857.

Anglo-American Oil Company (subsidiary of Standard Oil) of Iran plotted the the assassination of Iran’s Prime Minister Haj Ali Razmara and the overthrow of the Mohammed Mossadegh regime. Thereafter, it was the puppet regime of Shah Of Iran which terrorised Iran for 30 years that paved the way for return of Ayatollah Khomeini – and Iran’s regression to medieval times. And who was leading this campaign – Kermit Roosevelt (Teddy Roosevelt’s grandson).New Clues to JFK’s Murder?

In South America

In 1997, the CIA de-classified papers which admitted it planned and executed the coup in Guatemala – something that was known all along. This was done to protect the interests of the United Fruit Company – which owned large tracts of agricultural land in South America, used South American labour and shipped out fruit to America. Guatemalan farmers were run out of the market.

When Guatemala proposed land reforms so that Guatemalans could prosper in Guatemala, the Government of Jacobo Arbenz was overthrown. By the way, the term Banana republics came into being from the frequent intervention of the US into South American countries – and then ridiculing these countries for instability. To obtain US Governmental intervention, the United Fruit Company engaged services of Edward Louis Bernays (Sigmund Freud’s nephew) as PR front man.

Good ole DaysThe last 100 years saw the use of these companies as a means to economic dominance. ITT was used in South America for installing and removing dictators

… ITT papers published by Jack Anderson in March 1972, and in the hearings on these papers conducted by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee a year later. This material establishes that offers of financial aid aimed at stopping Allende were made by ITT president Harold S. Geneen to the CIA in July 1970 and to Henry Kissinger’s office in September” (Foreign Affairs; January 1974).

Had Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger not responded to International Telephone & Telegraph and Pepsi-Cola by overthrowing Salvador Allende, Chile “would have found a less violent, more constitutional way out of its conundrum.” writes Stephen Kinzer in his book Overthrow: America’s Century of Regime Change From Hawaii to Iraq.

To gain control of the Panama Canal Company, the operator of the Panama Canal, US engineered the secession of Panama from Colombia. With a puppet Government in place, The Hay-Bunau-Varilla Treaty allowed the U.S. to build the Panama Canal. Subsequent interventions to advance Western oil interests in Colombia and the Canal interests in Panama have reduced Governmental authority in these countries. Drug cartels, kidnapping and ransom now control the economy of these countries.

Nearer home, of course, the next ruler of Pakistan (military or otherwise) is decided by US – at least for now.

First Gold Discovery In AustraliaThe Cornering Of Gold Supplies

For the last 150 years, the ABC countries (America, Australia, Britain, Canada) comprising the Anglo-Saxon bloc (countries, colonies and companies) have controlled 90% of the world’s gold production. Till (a large part of) India was a British Colony, they also controlled more than 50% of the above-the-ground gold reserves. This gave them absolute liberty to print depreciating currency and flood the world pieces of paper(called dollars and pounds), manipulate the world financial system and keep other populations poor and backward.

Enslavement & Annihilation Of The Natives

They could capture gold supplies by the annihilation of native populations in America and Canada (‘Red Indians’ are tourist attractions now), killed the aborigines in Australia (and apologise now).

Till the middle of 19th century, raw slavery continued. By mid 19th century new forms of slavery was introduced – indentured labour, share cropping, etc. They re-invented slavery (in the 20th century again) and renamed it as apartheid which made native populations into slaves. They could, of course, truthfully claim that great Anglo-Saxon frontiersmen discovered gold and settled empty continents – in ‘hostile conditions’.

https://i0.wp.com/img219.imageshack.us/img219/2897/koreausaflagmashupob5.gifThe Creation Of Client Sates

Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, most of South America – have been reduced to the situation of client states. The basic position is Uncle Sam knows best – or else! These states have become production centres for the USA, cheap labour will be given an ‘opportunity’ to serve the ‘master’ states.

All these states also have significant military presence of the Anglo-Saxon Bloc which is a matter of concern for India.

Elephants in the room

Western models, which have evolved through the prism of slavery, colonialism, genocide, concentration of power are an end-of-life model. To use end-of-life products may seem like a low cost solution in the short run. The bigger issue in most cases is the  lock-in effect that these legacy systems impose on the ‘buyers’ – e.g. Singapore.

The western model of (natural and people) exploitation has runs its course – for instance, in India even salt was made into a high-tax commodity. It is a dead-end model. Parts of this model, have been used successfully by other countries – Japan with its keiretsus and Koreans with their chaebol. But obviously, this is a model that the West is an expert in – and what others copy, the West has finished with. Copycat models allow the west to predict the next steps easily and taken competitive actions with certainty. The answer for others is to create another country model. The only country which has tried this is India.

The Alternate Model

Bharat-tantra, the Indic political system that depends on local justice, low-policing, non-state free-coinage /gold-as-currency, absence of religion, property rights for all, low-tax systems, free-labour (as opposed to slave labour), enterprise instead of employment, wealth-and-property distribution instead of concentration, is the model that has a future – and a record of past success.

India, where non-State reform has played a very major role in crime, policing (JP’s dacoit reform), land reform (Vinoba Bhave’s Bhoodan movement), political change (JP’s Sampoorna Kranti movement). After the economic buffer from Bombay High oil discovery in 1974, the Indian State has certainly, steadily shed various aspects of its colonial legacy. More importantly, India did not go through the slavery-colonialism-capitalism route at all.

It has instead inching towards a republican, (largely) market-driven, democratic, declining role of State, multi-ethnic-religion-linguistic political model which is unique in modern history. What India needs to do is to one decrease the colonial inheritances further. Deliberate amnesia by historians, has obscured Bharat-tantra. India is today slotted as a socialist country – where as it has been reducing the features of a socialist State.

The underestimated and undermined political leadership in India, has worked at renewing  the Indian model – which is non-exploitative, stable and can bring equity and growth. It is this model that before others, India (and Indians) should believe in – and beat a modern path for the world to follow.

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