Sunday, April 12, 2009

4th most corrupt!

Quite frankly I am not sure how they come up with an empirical data for this, but if this study/survey is to be believed, India is the 4th most corrupt nation in Asia.
I am thinking it should be in top 20 if not 10 of the world.

If you were born and raised in India this should not surprise you one bit. We have seen,heard and even lived corruption. Corruption is a way of life in India. And we have come to a point in last 60 odd years of "independence" to expect corruption to be regular, normal and mundane. It's like, its a given.

I am sure even reading about it is a yawn. But just think about it, why have we taken this for granted? How low have we set our bars?

I know people will say, "So what? All nations are corrupt. America has corruption too, but only at higher level."

I would like to stick my neck out on it. America may be corrupt. And I am sure in the higher echelons it is. But I can say for sure, that for day to day routine for commoners like me, it is not in same ball part as India. Not even close.

Point in case - I got my US driver's ID in 1 hour flat. It took me years to get it in India, and when I did get, I got it under the table (there; i have a red flag in my blog now)

I was speaking to one of my co-workers the other day. Her family is originally from China although she's an American citizen. We often compare stuff on India and China. She did mention it to me a couple of times that corruption is rampant in China too. You cannot get your simple, regular "work done" unless you grease the palms of some authority.

Considering that both India and China are pretty corrupt, it can logically be deduced that "monopolizing" of a system leads to corruption. Both India and China had "socialists/communists" leanings and hence had the State controlling the 'commanding heights of economy'. The result was that extraordinary power came in hands of few. This monopolizing of power gives sundry authorities like government workers more power than they merit. And power corrupts.

In other words distribution of power diminishes the probability of corruption instances, although there's no possible system that can completely eliminate it. Distribution of power is necessary although NOT a sufficient condition for eliminating corruption.

Which comes to my next conjecture. Since man by nature is imperfect, it would be impossible for man to create a perfect system. He can only improve but never "nail it" really.

6 billion imperfect men cannot develop one perfect system. The chances are 6 billion times remote. But we can create the closest to best or perfect (second best, i.e). Meaning the closest we can get to be best.

In terms of CMM model we need to "optimize" and keep improving. None of the systems will ever be perfect. But we should try and adopt a system that gives more bang for the buck. In short, something that is beneficial to vast majority, if not to ALL. (There are always going to be fringe elements in society who would loose out. To think that those fringe elements somehow represent the whole template is not reasonable)

If all the systems of the world are to be compared, Socialist and Communist model surely do not make a strong case for that "second best system" I am talking of. It can be a romantic concept, but on ground it has reverse impact on quality of life for the majority. And the key word I need to emphasize is Majority again. Which is exactly my argument. (If 42% of children in India are still malnourished, you get the drift)

For all the rambling that I have done so far, only one line from the brilliant Winston Churchill should really suffice -
The inherent vice of Capitalism is uneven distribution of wealth. The inherent vice of Socialism is even distribution of miseries

1 comment:

Rohit said...

You bet!!!

There is a quote from the Tamil movie "Indian"...I am translating and somewhat paraphrasing it"In other countries, people take bribes to not do their job or to turn the other way but in India people take bribes to do the job they are hired to do" - perfectly applies to the DMV at US versus RTO in India!