Thursday, July 16, 2015

Piss Boys

“Hour of the Second Defecation” (disconcertingly an hour earlier than usual for his evening …abulations). Dharmapuri is a country where even every last of the President’s excrement is venerated (they take their shit seriously in Dharmapuri….) and each bowel movement examined by the press (“’Magnificent, said one; ’great stability,” said a second) - - - suggesting that this has become a land of mindless, groveling courtiers, oblivious to reality. (O.V.Vijayan in “Saga of Dharmapuri”).

Yes, this is the land of groveling courtiers dressed in khaki and olive green overalls and of piss boys in uniform, holding piss buckets for ministers donning cotton spun white wears known by the desi name ‘khadhi’;  cowering, hovering with piss pots minding the piss buckets for the Lordships to pee, because no one can tell when their bladders get filled with the pale yellow urine, distilled in their kidneys served with the exotic food and spirits that they devour with tax payers money; when it will be time to jet it out- the stinking excretion of a depraved species. When the Lordships pass by and even if you happened to be pissing you got to hold back your piss as a gesture of veneration & respect and salute them, the Lordships. For only the Lordships can piss when they want and where they want.

It is in such a society that Rishi Raj Singh the policeman dared to mind his business seated firmly in his chair and ignored the arrival of the tutorial school teacher turned home minister and wealthy politician who walked by, escorted by police officers virtually massaging him from toe to groin. Outrage and incense were the reaction from the political class who were used to police officers squirm and tremble in their presence, bending backward and forward, sideways and levitate too at their beckoning and often wetting their underpants in abject fear and debased.

Rishi Raj Singh the above board police officer from Rajasthan went by the protocol book which dictates that a guest need not stand up to salute an elected representative and sat firmly in the chair as the State Home minister later stepped in on the scene escorted by a retinue of supplicating imbeciles clad in khaki; holding piss buckets. This was branded as disrespect towards an elected representative and abominable arrogance of a police officer who will keep his job only at the will and pleasure of the elected representatives. The State was offended said some as it was an affront to the State & its 70 million Mallus and not just to the Home minister.

Rishi Raj Singh stuck to what was laid down in the protocol book. But in a country where politicians and elected assholes take it upon themselves as the birth right to defecate and demand that bureaucrats scoop their pooh it was seen as an offence second to caricaturing the prophet of Islam. It was only a few months ago a young Administrative officer was pulled up for donning sunglasses while shaking hands with the prime minister.

It is a sad reminder of the pathetic abyss of our times that Rishi Raj Sigh was moved out from the position of transport commissioner and recently as the chief vigilance officer of the state Electricity board because he was booking powerful weasels who had defaulted payment to the board and were also stealing power from transmission lines. Earlier, as the transport commissioner when he insisted that passengers travelling by car must wear seat belts, the minister in charge was annoyed and chose to reverse a sane order.

Leaving aside the book rules and niceties of protocol I wonder if any self respecting person will want to salute this awful species we call politicians. The very sight of these scoundrels walking by would make one writhe in disgust and utter helplessness. Recently in the USA, President Obama was chastised for not saluting the Marine who was in attention by the Air force 1, helicopter that was to fly the president out. That sounded wise and just- the president or the elected representative saluting the Marine. After all it is the soldier and the police who are at the receiving end of fire and not these parasites that are often well cocooned inside state mansions and steel armoured bullet proof motor cars. They always maintain a human shield.

It also is laid down that traffic should be stopped only when the president, prime minister and visiting foreign dignitaries travel by road. Which means that no one should hold back pedestrian and vehicle movement to make way for other persons and that certainly include state chief ministers, central ministers and even governors?

It is time that well meaning denizens reacted in face of the arrogant ways of this abhorrent lot. But, then is it not true that we get to be ruled by men we deserve and in democracy aren’t we electing our representatives who in body, mind and deed are us- our reflection, our shadow? Why then wail?

Sunday, July 12, 2015

The Greek Tragedy

The last few weeks, in the Western print and visual media we have seen a feast of commentaries on the Greek tragedy. The Indian press, baring a few of substance and the visual news media were totally oblivious to the tumult in Greece. As usual they had ample matters to feed upon that were of local flavour. There was also a fair bit of postings and comments on the social media too on Greek bankruptcy.

In the end though I had devoured most of the lead articles and the incisive reporting of the BBC, I simply cannot help not wondering about the Greek economic mess as simple issue of a recalcitrant borrower who displays arrogance and  a fair bit of credit immorality. The leftists, people like Noam Chomsky and the capitalist baiters will disagree and say that it is grossly offensive to brand the Greek attitude as  dishonourable unwillingness to repay debts. Astonishingly, I have not seen an article from the quintessential Arundhati Roy who would generally have reveled in an opportunity to blast Western economic policies directed at developing economies.

One need not have to be an Adam Smith or a Keynesian disciple to discern the Greek mess and it should not take a great deal of acumen to see that whosoever lives beyond their means- be it an individual or a country as a whole, capitalists, communist or socialists you will soon reach a cul de sac and have your back against the granite wall; lenders will snarl and all hell will break loose. Further lending will generally be ruled out in case of individuals whilst corporates and governments will have to sing the tough tunes lenders dictate. It is simple reasoning here that nobody wills, to throw good money after bad money unless strict assurance is available. Then, why are the cries of betrayal and cries of capitalist conspiracy? Did we hear a murmur of disapproval when the lenders were letting credit lines open to Greece and the ECB was generous?

This reminds me of the Indian situation which is akin to the EU. Many states have run up dangerous levels of overdrafts with the Central government and in a way is forcing printing of money .Monetary policies like that the ECB prescribed for its members including Greece was negated by the latter’s  fiscal application. Going slow, weak and timid on tax collection is all the more dangerous for a State for instance like Kerala that has no industrial output to bring in revenue.  In the case of Greece, one could watch on television that citizens were aware of the hole their country had got into and the austerity & belt tightening they will have to grin and bear. Back here we simply are oblivious to economics and are gaga when corrupt, dishonest and inefficient governments in States keep providing doles and freebies. Every meal that is free will have to fetch resources from elsewhere to make it stay free!

At the end of the acrimony with Greece will there be an honest and dispassionate appraisal of what went wrong for the Greeks to be indebted by over more than 350 billion Euro? Indeed the multi- billion dollar Athen Olympics was a luxury that wrought deep holes in Greek pockets. Like the Roman denizens twenty one days of round the clock circus briefly cast away reality. But that was just one of the many leaks and extravaganzas for which Greeks may have used borrowed money.

I was reminded of this necessary inquisition by a real time story of how a galloping business entity that nose-dived? Fortunately for the promoters the Banks intervened favourably and offered a life line of credit restructuring. Meaning to include the precise antidote ECB might prescribe for the Greeks – strict austerity and deferred interest and debt repayment.But here again neither the Banks nor the promoters seemed to investigate how the mess came about? The safeguard against the repetition of history is to find the culprit within if not show him the door.
There is indeed a simple quotidian moral in this Greek tragedy.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015


“You see, what you convey in English need not necessarily sound polite and civil when you convey the same in other languages.”  She made a statement of sorts and without waiting for my reaction continued, “In fact it can be gauche and rude too. So you really cannot blame her for being annoyed. “I protested, yet when you are confronted by two women and when they are mother and daughter duo it is forbidding and you can be sure that all your remonstration and explanation will be in vain. You simply can’t reason with these folks. They are crafted to wear you down.

I could not understand this reasoning. Just could not. So, I was in no mood to throw the towel and relent to this nonsensical talk and lecture the duo have prepared to wear me down with. I minced no words and said. “Ok, ok, even agreeing with your decision on the choice and use of phrases, when you tell someone  ‘fuck you’, in English and when you transliterate the phrase into Malayalam or Tamil and even Hindi for instance, the meaning and the menacing intent is the same as long as you pepper your voice with baleful  intent. Yet you could tell someone ‘fuck you’, with enough punch to make him or her understand that what he or she is up to is stupid and can’t be approved, but no menacing, sinister intent is harboured.”

“Hear; hear you can never agree that you are in the wrong. You are all excited when you have done something bad. You do not own up and you simply argue.” They said in union. But the younger one was more vocal. I turned to her and repeated what sparked the conversation or argument in their parlance. “Come on, if I had told the girl, ‘stop chattering’ in Queens English, certainly you folks would have had nothing to say. Not that the intent is evil and rude when conveyed in Malayalam and elite when said in English. Moreover she is a girl who is about your age and with the same irritating recalcitrance as you display and when I told her to shut up and listen I was in fact admonishing her for being brusque and jumping the gun than listen carefully to what  I tried to convey to her over the phone.”

“Nevertheless, the language- the word you used is not acceptable, even if she is a young subordinate, an apprentice or whatever.” This was the mother‘s judgement. With these folks around, one gets the feeling of being marooned in a Central African Banana Republic and facing a Kangaroo court.
“No wonder she called you MCP when she heard you speak so to that girl your subordinate.” That was the daughter and she said with a chuckle.

“I don’t care a damn what she thinks about me, because she is presumptuous.  And you folks simply refuse to see and are prejudiced towards whatever I say. She just had no idea about in what circumstance I told so to that girl and what was the conversation transpiring between us. She simply acted like an overbearing matron. Moreover I do not see an eye to eye with her. We are just not homogenous. But for her to label me a chauvinist is boorish.Ca you tell one instance when you found me a male chauvinistic filthy boar?” I directed that question to the mother.
I continued. ”I have quite a few women friends and have good relationship with them. None would call me such sardonic names. Go ask them if I’m chauvinistic male boar. What she said reflects her arrogance, her disdain for others. Because she could have her way with one, she thinks she could lord over the rest too. I care a hoot."

“Yes do that, after all you always think you are right. You argue for the sake of proving your point. You don’t see if you are right. All that you do is yelling and raise your voice. In the bargain you raise your blood pressure.” I do not remember who stated this as the mauling was a joint exercise, I did not keep much tab as to who was punching below the belt.

“Indeed, I argue. I argue when I believe in something passionately and want to put forth my reason, my point. I raise my voice to emphasise the point and you allege that is screaming and yelling. If one can’t discuss and if you see an argument as a quarrel and an exercise that will only result in raised blood pressure and bad blood, well, then one must tape ones mouth with adhesive tape and wear blinkers too. A handful of cotton screwed into the ears would also ensure that all that is, is sound and voices, opinions are shut out.