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  1. #31
    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    I firmly believe you get the government you deserve. People talk about corrupt politicians but the vast majority of Indians pay bribes on a regular basis to get things done - from a hundred rupees here to a couple crores there, depending on the job. If you yourself participate in the process, regardless of the excuse of 'oh well, nothing would get done if I didn't' you can't expect your government to be any different. You decided to put personal expedience above principle when you gave that bribe. And it's a self perpetuating cycle - as long as people continue to give bribes, there'll be people who demand them in order to get things done. There isn't going to be this uber super special process that will somehow end corruption, unless it's a movement that starts from the people themselves when enough of them personally stop giving bribes. Gandhi was mentioned here today and his quote (though it's been way overplayed) is very insightful when it comes to societal problems like this: "Be the change you want to see in the world." I know that's much easier said than done - and how pervasive the culture of bribes is in India. And I'm not saying it's easily fixed or but really, the issue isn't with the politicians, it's with a broader aspect of Indian civil society. That is much more difficult to change.

    Considering the bureaucratic nightmare that exists, I can understand why people give bribes and I'm not so holier than thou to suggest that if I were living in India, that I would never be tempted or never have to give a bribe. But the fact of the matter is that the problem is at the level of the average citizen. As long as people are willing to spend a little extra to get the job done by giving someone an under the table payment, there'll be people who will take that payment. No amount of oversight is really going to change that to an appreciable extent.
    Last edited by silentstriker; 14-11-2011 at 07:01 PM.
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  2. #32
    International Vice-Captain Redbacks's Avatar
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    I've seen the documentaries of India prior to liberalisation and I can only assume that the nation would have come to a halt if not for bribes. Looking at all the paper work I was tempted to jump off a bridge. You take this away and it's like the '5 monkeys analogy' (don't sue) to explain groupthink/corporate knowledge.

    5 monkeys get put in a room with a ladder to a bunch of bananas. When one goes to get them they all get sprayed with water. Hence from now on, they learn not to go up the ladder. Now you take one out and replace it with a newbie. Still the group won't let it go up the ladder. Continue this process until there is now 5 new monkeys in the room. None have ever been sprayed with water and yet all of them 'know' that you cannot climb the ladder. Fresh ideas is the key to break this cycle as the 'water' has now dissapeared.

    Similar thing happened when Russia embraced markets, the population don't understand straight away how a market economy works. Because the 'state sector' was 90% but in reality everyone was using the black market, people didn't understand property rights. Hence mobsters took over many of the state owned industries.

    Over time people start to find that corruption isn't economically efficient (other than governments where it is the MO) and conduct trade more like we see.

  3. #33
    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend smalishah84's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redbacks View Post
    I've seen the documentaries of India prior to liberalisation and I can only assume that the nation would have come to a halt if not for bribes. Looking at all the paper work I was tempted to jump off a bridge. You take this away and it's like the '5 monkeys analogy' (don't sue) to explain groupthink/corporate knowledge.

    5 monkeys get put in a room with a ladder to a bunch of bananas. When one goes to get them they all get sprayed with water. Hence from now on, they learn not to go up the ladder. Now you take one out and replace it with a newbie. Still the group won't let it go up the ladder. Continue this process until there is now 5 new monkeys in the room. None have ever been sprayed with water and yet all of them 'know' that you cannot climb the ladder. Fresh ideas is the key to break this cycle as the 'water' has now dissapeared.

    Similar thing happened when Russia embraced markets, the population don't understand straight away how a market economy works. Because the 'state sector' was 90% but in reality everyone was using the black market, people didn't understand property rights. Hence mobsters took over many of the state owned industries.

    Over time people start to find that corruption isn't economically efficient (other than governments where it is the MO) and conduct trade more like we see.
    I think SS's analysis is closer to the mark for the sub-continent (India-pak-bang-sl). I don't think that people would realize the benefits of free markets and they would have an epiphany.
    And smalishah's avatar is the most classy one by far Jan certainly echoes the sentiments of CW

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  4. #34
    Hall of Fame Member Cevno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by silentstriker View Post
    I firmly believe you get the government you deserve. People talk about corrupt politicians but the vast majority of Indians pay bribes on a regular basis to get things done - from a hundred rupees here to a couple crores there, depending on the job. If you yourself participate in the process, regardless of the excuse of 'oh well, nothing would get done if I didn't' you can't expect your government to be any different. You decided to put personal expedience above principle when you gave that bribe. And it's a self perpetuating cycle - as long as people continue to give bribes, there'll be people who demand them in order to get things done. There isn't going to be this uber super special process that will somehow end corruption, unless it's a movement that starts from the people themselves when enough of them personally stop giving bribes. Gandhi was mentioned here today and his quote (though it's been way overplayed) is very insightful when it comes to societal problems like this: "Be the change you want to see in the world." I know that's much easier said than done - and how pervasive the culture of bribes is in India. And I'm not saying it's easily fixed or but really, the issue isn't with the politicians, it's with a broader aspect of Indian civil society. That is much more difficult to change.

    Considering the bureaucratic nightmare that exists, I can understand why people give bribes and I'm not so holier than thou to suggest that if I were living in India, that I would never be tempted or never have to give a bribe. But the fact of the matter is that the problem is at the level of the average citizen. As long as people are willing to spend a little extra to get the job done by giving someone an under the table payment, there'll be people who will take that payment. No amount of oversight is really going to change that to an appreciable extent.
    That is true to some extent, but 3 situations -

    You have just had someone burgle you, and the police refuse to register a FIR without a bribe immediately. What you do?

    You are in the Bureaucracy and struggling to pay the bills, house installment etc.. and then you see 2 of your colleagues engaging in corruption, getting and getting away with it.what you do?

    You are contesting a election for a Member of Parliament seat, your opponent is spending 20 crores putting hoarding everywhere and getting maximum exposure to a largely uninformed huge electorate. He plans to make this money back and more when he gets elected through corruption and you know that if you don't do that, you won't get elected. The pressure to do the same will be huge, won't it?

    Corruption is almost like a cycle and just leaving it to the Citizens as a whole waking up one day and deciding we won't engage in corruption is not possible, because as they say power and system corrupts and you have to corrupt first on most occasions to attempt to change the system too.

    There will be rotten apples everywhere but what needs to be ensured is that they don't spoil the bunch. Thus, there needs to be a institutionalized system with enough friction between all the parties(and not complicity) to ensure that that at least it is tough for this rotten apple to affect others and also to get away, if not be singled out and eradicated early. There is a will against corruption in almost all the population, but the problem is that there is not such a culture collectively.And, This culture needs to be created through checks in the system in which we live and then the will to fight can kick in(at least in terms of others) and the cycle of corruption dented to some extent with both the punisher being under pressure to punish as well as the bribe givers/takers not being benefiting.

    I agree, ideally this change would be bottom up in direction, but that is not possible in the current environment we live in and nigh on impossible in a country as large and diverse as India. So it has to start at the top and then trickle down to the bottom, with many efforts to affect as much change that is possible from the bottom - upwards too.


  5. #35
    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend smalishah84's Avatar
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    great analysis Cevno.

  6. #36
    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cevno View Post
    That is true to some extent, but 3 situations -

    You have just had someone burgle you, and the police refuse to register a FIR without a bribe immediately. What you do?

    You are in the Bureaucracy and struggling to pay the bills, house installment etc.. and then you see 2 of your colleagues engaging in corruption, getting and getting away with it.what you do?

    You are contesting a election for a Member of Parliament seat, your opponent is spending 20 crores putting hoarding everywhere and getting maximum exposure to a largely uninformed huge electorate. He plans to make this money back and more when he gets elected through corruption and you know that if you don't do that, you won't get elected. The pressure to do the same will be huge, won't it?
    See my last paragraph of the post you quoted.....


    Quote Originally Posted by Cevno View Post
    Corruption is almost like a cycle and just leaving it to the Citizens as a whole waking up one day and deciding we won't engage in corruption is not possible, because as they say power and system corrupts and you have to corrupt first on most occasions to attempt to change the system too.
    I agree. It's not possible.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cevno View Post
    I agree, ideally this change would be bottom up in direction, but that is not possible in the current environment we live in and nigh on impossible in a country as large and diverse as India. So it has to start at the top and then trickle down to the bottom, with many efforts to affect as much change that is possible from the bottom - upwards too.
    I'm saying that it's impossible for it to work top to bottom. There is no way you will be able to stop people from accepting bribes as long as everybody is giving them. People might be against corruption, but they are really only against corruption when it doesn't involve themselves as individuals getting the benefit. That is simply not sustainable.

    As I said, in my post, it's a cycle where a person is willing to pay to get a benefit -> someone is willing to accept that in order to give them that unfair advantage -> now other people feel compel to pay to be 'on the same playing field' -> now the bribes are expected and nothing will be done unless people pay.

    It's like in Greece...people want corruption to end and the country to get out of revenue problems and blame the government for it while at the same time, a huge percentage of people avoid taxes by doing business under the table! You can't have it both ways.

  7. #37
    Hall of Fame Member Cevno's Avatar
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    Arvind Kejriwal & Shekhar Singh at THiNK 2011 - YouTube

    Agree with what Arvind Kejriwal is saying here. Taking all the 2 congress supporters and 1 status quoist on together. WAG!!

  8. #38
    Hall of Fame Member Sanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by silentstriker View Post
    I'm saying that it's impossible for it to work top to bottom. There is no way you will be able to stop people from accepting bribes as long as everybody is giving them. People might be against corruption, but they are really only against corruption when it doesn't involve themselves as individuals getting the benefit. That is simply not sustainable.

    As I said, in my post, it's a cycle where a person is willing to pay to get a benefit -> someone is willing to accept that in order to give them that unfair advantage -> now other people feel compel to pay to be 'on the same playing field' -> now the bribes are expected and nothing will be done unless people pay.

    It's like in Greece...people want corruption to end and the country to get out of revenue problems and blame the government for it while at the same time, a huge percentage of people avoid taxes by doing business under the table! You can't have it both ways.
    Pretty much sums up the issue of corruption in India. It is amazing to know how much you can accomplish by just paying as little as few 100 Rs. If I wanted I could have got a passport that would have been valid for 50 years. My Driver's License allowed me to drive cars, trucks, scooters..

  9. #39
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  10. #40
    Hall of Fame Member Cevno's Avatar
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    Lokpal: Cong does U-turn on babus' inclusion - Politics - Politics News - ibnlive

    Differences prevail over four key issues of Lokpal bill

    And here we go again. The Congress has gone bonkers really and if the Anna Hazare mobilises as much as the last time, it will have to pay a price in the coming 5 state elections.

    Meanwhile the logjam in parliament and shying away from a vote on FDI in retail continues -

    FDI impasse: PM Manmohan Singh meets allies, Congress dares opposition to bring no-confidence motion - The Times of India

    FDI in India: Government mobilising MPs, may opt for parliament vote in retail - The Economic Times

  11. #41
    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend smalishah84's Avatar
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    btw what are the chances of this congress govt being re-elected?

    Who seems to be the next best contention if they don't return?

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cevno View Post
    That is true to some extent, but 3 situations -

    You have just had someone burgle you, and the police refuse to register a FIR without a bribe immediately. What you do?

    You are in the Bureaucracy and struggling to pay the bills, house installment etc.. and then you see 2 of your colleagues engaging in corruption, getting and getting away with it.what you do?

    You are contesting a election for a Member of Parliament seat, your opponent is spending 20 crores putting hoarding everywhere and getting maximum exposure to a largely uninformed huge electorate. He plans to make this money back and more when he gets elected through corruption and you know that if you don't do that, you won't get elected. The pressure to do the same will be huge, won't it?
    I'm thinking about what mechanisms they have in the UK to prevent the situation from reaching this point. If a policeman refused to investigate a burglary without a bribe it would cause a scandal in the popular press and a major political uproar. Maybe there's something to be learned from that? I'm not sure what, though. I agree with SS that the problem is cultural and not confined to politicians, but it seems unrealistic to suggest that the way to solve the problem is for individuals to just decide they're not going to take it anymore.
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  13. #43
    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Uppercut's Avatar
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    Where does the opposition to the retail FDI bill come from? From this side of the world it just looks like a ridiculously good idea.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uppercut View Post
    Where does the opposition to the retail FDI bill come from? From this side of the world it just looks like a ridiculously good idea.
    Yeah, It totally is. However, The opposition parties here think it is their sacred duty to fight anything proposed by the govt. regardless of how beneficial it is.
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  15. #45
    Hall of Fame Member Cevno's Avatar
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    I am personally somewhat divided on it tbh. All for FDI but like M.S Swaminathan not sure whether we need it in retail.
    It is a big source of unorganised self employment in the country(unlike any other economy in the world), and a possible streamlining of it could lead to some problems for sure unless the competition safeguards are built in and the mechanism's are fully prepared for it.
    The manufacturing sector also needs to be protected from the Chinese to some extent, because India can't become as dependent as U.S.A on them.
    Last edited by Cevno; 02-12-2011 at 01:25 PM.

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