And the article confuses the message as well. For example,
In the mid-1990s, just two Indians featured in the annual Forbes billionaire list, racking up around $3bn between them. But against a backdrop of the gradual economic re-opening that began in 1991, this has quickly changed. By 2016, India had 84 entries on the Forbes billionaire list. Its economy was then worth around $2.3tn, according to the World Bank. China reached that level of GDP in 2006, but with just 10 billionaires to show for it. At the same stage of development, India had created eight times as many.
What has number of billionaires have to do with anything? As per Forbes, 100 and 1 billion are the same.
On the Nirav Modi and Mallya saga, India's bankruptcy system was broken and many times banks were in doldrums trying to recover dues. There is a new bankruptcy law which should help to smooth things out. But then the article spends too much time talking about Mallya and reduces an important piece of legalisation to a mere mention.
So, while I agree to the premise that India's rise has been astounding and corruption/cronyism is a problem, this article is not worth anyone's time.
I'm not a great author by any means but it just seems so self indulgent when journalists do that.
And then everytime it seems they're finally getting to the meat, they jumb back to describing someone's upbringing.
Yes. That's why I love forums:
- The main points and main criticisms are probably presented by someone.
- Many people comment. Thus one is not limited to the presentation of the journalist.
The other factor is gold savings. Most families have a large amount of it, and provide good insulation against inflation.
Pretty much bulk of India's middle class got rich in the post 1992 era, when the market were opened up making it easy to do business. The software riches came due to US money flowing in, the salaries were high. And most people got to travel abroad. And given foreign exchange factor most people made a killing till 2005. Back then it was easy to get US visas and work there. The dollar paid 35 rupees a piece and land prices in most Indian metros(especially Bangalore) were quite cheap. People who bought lands anywhere in peripheral Bangalore have seen their wealth increase by crazy factors.
The other factor is again opening up of mass private sector hiring, subsequent growth in economy and the stock market.
And lastly of course, corruption, nepotism and dowry market.
I have been hearing that for the last 7 years.
Also staying Abroad and investing in India isn't a good thing to do. Sometimes there are encroachment issues.
Basically if you are a able male with a good income and family background, you ask for top money as gifts during marriage.
I know this will never be popular opinion, but as a citizen of a poor, developing country with widespread corruption, I sometimes have to wonder: is democracy really the best model for poor nations that don't have the foundations to foster it?
By layering and federating, you introduce noise into the system. One layer may be controlled by one party, another by another. You are purposefully introducing noise and isolating possible corruption vectors. With enough noise and isolation, each time power switches over at a node or layer, there's widespread "corruption cleaning" that mostly involves running out all the corrupt guys from the other party and setting up your own corruption that works in a different way.
Looked at another way, the system has to have a way to be wrong. If one person or one party controls everything from top to bottom (or the system stops being layered and federated), then there's no feedback loop -- and there's your unholy nexus.
Personally I'd add term limits to the mix, mainly because I think whatever the government is, it should be understandable and controllable by an average citizen. Also if you're in for a long time, it's doubtful you'll change your ways -- and there goes the feedback loop again.
You never eliminate corruption. That's a fool's game. Instead what you want is to isolate it in such a way that over time it's easy to identify and remedy.
India saw the rise of regional parties with the parallel fall of the Congress party since the 90s. There are many states now where Congress has only namesake presence. This resulted in coalition rule at the federal level which was finally reversed in 2014 when BJP came to power with simple majority (though also as part of the NDA coalition). Subsequently it won most state elections, effectively gaining power in 19/31 states/union territories. But due to the bicameral nature of Indian parliament, it is far from majority in the Rajya Sabha (Upper House, where the MPs are indirectly elected). Because of this they have not been able to introduce many legislations.
Perhaps so. Perhaps not. I suspect we have different definitions of "noisy". There's also a tremendous gap between what you see in the media and how things actually work. That's one of the cornerstones of a corrupt system, sadly: the impenetrable nature of trying to observe it from the outside.
I wish you the best of luck. My advice is to acknowledge human nature and create systems that work with it. These systems tend to be the ones that are able to adapt and thrive over time.
Modern well established democracies have just had a longer time to refine the system to a slightly less shitty version of the democracy that come before them.
So you might be right, but I wonder if it's the journey that matters? Ie is it that countries have to go through the process in order to get to a better place? So you can't just drop a democracy system from another country in place somewhere, and hope that it works. That of course doesn't mean you shouldn't learn from the mistakes of others.
I actually think you have a very valid concern. As Churchill once said "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others." ( I know it isn't Churchill who said it first, but let not derail the topic )
As someone who has lived in Representative Democracy, Direct Democracy, and Authoritarian countries, My only conclusion is, none of the above form of government matters as much. What is much more fundamental, in every form of government is well educated, and well informed people. They need to be taught to think independently, and critically, to make values of things, to make a judgement, and (much) more importantly, to learn from the mistakes if they did make a wrong judgement. Education is the key and possibly the only key to political and society progress. Once we have that, any form of Government will work, as ultimately the power of Government comes from People, even Authoritarian.
That is of course ignoring capitalism sneaking through, where human greed are maximised. Where Education isn't about teaching the basics of thinking and values, but skills set that you are required to get a job.
General mistrust regarding the media and politicians is required. E.g. the weird behavior of the top UK politicians in the Skripal case, the lies related to the war in Iraq, the war in Libya, the war in Syria.
Understanding the basics of science is important too. If you believe in working cars then you should believe in climate warming and the need for urgent change too because the involved science is basically the same.
Understanding of non-classic or modern or progressive economics is important too.
Oh, to clarify, I want a longer time frame. I want a autocratic regime which didn't hit the "Dumbo peak" within 1 century, +/- 20 years. Heck, even Singapore doesn't qualify, their system has been up for only about 60 years. They still have about as many years to hit a dud.
I'll wait :)
Or are you assuming that democracy naturally devolves into a corrupt regime? I doubt it. It seems to be the exact opposite: stable, long term democracies are the most resilient ones.
All governments regardless of their nature or intent devolve into corrupt regimes over time. The nature of government - authority through a monopoly on violence and coercive taxation - makes corruption, authoritarianism and collapse inevitable.
Checks and balances only work when both the people insist on them and the government recognizes them. But in a democracy, people can be convinced to vote against their own interests, to vote out checks and balances or vote in autocrats or extremists, or to simply not care to stop power concentrating or collaborating where it shouldn't.
Given a choice between statism (a monopoly on violence) and anarchy (a free market of violence), I would more trust a democratic form of a monopoly on violence, so I would agree... at least that democracy is the least worse option, depending on what you want.
But I also believe democracies tend to devolve into autocracies the larger and more complex they become and the more abstracted the machinery of power becomes from the voters, so I would add a caveat that democracies when limited in their scope and power are the best option, and that one should expect that, inevitably, the entire thing will rot on the vine and have to be done away with entirely.
Although I wouldn't go as far as Thomas Jefferson and say a democracy should have a revolution every 20 years, I think the concept of a regular (nonviolent) "reset" in order to keep government from growing too removed from the will of the people is worth considering.
But if you are never allowed to build that, then what ?
To paraphrase someone on HN - laws tend to made for David to fight Goliath. But with time Goliath comes to understand the rules and uses it to shut down the Davids.
This is an evergreen story. Regulations sold as weapons for davids to defend against goliaths are instead used by goliaths to fend off davids. It turns out that Goliath can learn to use a sling too, and can hurl bigger stones with it. This is why goliaths like regulations so much, and why patents may be more disease than cure.
That's too big a thing to say! Please elaborate more.
The much maligned demonetization exercise carried out in end 2016 had at least one major positive - people started putting their money into mutual funds rather than buying gold. The size of Indian funds has grown manifold since then, and their contribution has bypassed that of foreign funds. With growing number of people entering the middle class with disposable incomes, this is only going to go up.
As for the people like Nirav Modi and Vijay Mallya, an Insolvency and Bankruptcy code was introduced in 2016 which has started showing results. Previously banks would spend years trying to get loans back from defaulters with very little coming back. This law allows quick bankruptcy and sale of assets while they still hold value.
There is certainly no harm in rise of billionaires if there is reasonable trickle down effect. And comparing the numbers with China is a bit apples to oranges as its a far more closed society with potentially many more unknown billionaires in the ranks of the Communist Party.
1% people in India cannot own 60% wealth unless they're running Pyramid schemes https://qz.com/843902/1-of-indians-now-hold-nearly-60-of-the...