Thursday, December 10, 2009

small states are bad news

dec 10th, 2009


new states mean more useless political/bureaucratic jobs, ie. more opportunities for graft and rent-seeking
 via Seesmic
large states anchored by big cities have worked in us: eg. CA w LA, SF, SD; TX w DFW, HOU; NY w NYC. small states ME, DE, WV insignificant
 via Seesmic
problem with telengana model: mohdans will start demanding their own enclaves. jihadis already asked for mohdan state in malabar last mont

4 comments:

estheppan said...

>>> new states mean more useless political/bureaucratic jobs, ie. more opportunities for graft and rent-seeking.

No.
More accountability. More proximity to the people of the region.

>>>large states anchored by big cities have worked in us

It won't in India.
Mumbai, one of the richest regions of the country is in Maharashtra, the same state where maximum no of farmer suicides occur in its Vidarbha region.

India's population spread and diversity of culture is widely varying from the US, which has only one culture despite having people from diverse origin- that of materialistic capitalism.

What works in US won't in India. Decentralised administration is the way to go in India.

>>>problem with telengana model: mohdans will start demanding their own enclaves. jihadis already asked for mohdan state in malabar last mont

If that is the excuse, it is similar to the paralysis by analysis.

Fear of jihadis asking for their own enclaves should not be the reason to stop necessary administrative reforms.

India should be a conglomeration of locally administered small states bound together by a common culture of bharatiyata, which has as its essence the upholding of dharma.

This relates to how bharatiya samskriti recognises sva-dharma and individual choices while western culture driven by one philosophy (capitalism/ communism/ atheism/ christianity/ islam/ judaism...) suppresses individual choices.

Thus western thought seeks to centralise power and agency to a selected few while bharatiyata is in de-centralisation of power and fostering of self-initiative.

dhanyavaad

nizhal yoddha said...

tiny statelets are not economically viable.

think of the weight that like bosnia, serbia, kosovo have, as compared to the weight they had before they balkanized themselves.

as i said before, critical mass. below a certain level, it just doesn't compute.

and the mohammedans will ask and get statelets:

1. greater bangladesh in the northeast

2. hyderabad as a union territory, code for 'let's begin ethnic cleansing of hindus here'

3. malabar, with its 30% mohammedans, and already seeing attacks on hindu temples in mohdan-majority malappuram district

4. lucknow and surroundings

and going further, have you seen any of the mini-pakistans even in big cities like bangalore? they will all want to secede.

here is a good example of what happens even without formal secession:

http://www.hindujagruti.org/news/8302.html

nizhal yoddha said...

accountability. i wish i believed you. but i am yet to meet a politician who is accountable.

in kerala, devolution of powers to the villages has happened. result: ever more corruption, as there are lots more people with their hands in the cookie jar.

estheppan said...

>>>tiny statelets are not economically viable.

Tiny countries may face some problems- both political and economical, but even that is surmountable as Israel has shown. Tiny states within one country should not have even that issue.

>>>think of the weight that like bosnia, serbia, kosovo have, as compared to the weight they had before they balkanized themselves.

Even such an argument, that size matters in international politics, is not borne out in reality as seen in the power much smaller countries than bosnia, serbia, such as Israel , Switzerland have in international affairs. Further, even a small country like Sri Lanka achieved what the bigger Indian Armed Forces could not, i.e., destroy LTTE. Pakistan, one fourth the size of India in area and one tenth in population, despite its rogue activities, wields more power in international affairs than India. Its not size that matters.

>>>... critical mass. below a certain level, it just doesn't compute.

That philosophy should have prevented micro-credits, nanotechnology, quantum physics from succeeding. Such fears may be the result of inertial effect of mind and may be unfounded.

>>>and the mohammedans will ask and get statelets:

While religion should not be the criteria for formation of states, the threat of demographic imperialism should be met with squarely. Not taking action because of such reasons is not sustaining in the long term.

>>>in kerala, devolution of powers to the villages has happened. result: ever more corruption

Kerala economy depends much on the remittances received from outside the state. This causes many of the enterprising and productive people to go outside Kerala for work. With the result that the less scrupulous left in the state perhaps have easy time and find employment in politics and such. Also, when the major chunk of population is working outside the state and sending money home, their family members in Kerala may become less responsible or discerning as their source of income is not dependednt on local administrators. All these factors may foster corruption even at lower levels.

The point of having smaller states is that a poor farmer in Yavatmal should not have to travel all the way to Mumbai to push his case. Similarly, a pensioner in Kasargode or Wynad should not have to go all the way to Tiruvananthapuram for his stuff. Administrators should be available and accountable to people at local levels.

The centralised system of administartion that we have now was made by the british to make things easier for them to squeeze the land and the people off its resources, not to help the people.
More and more matters should be decided at the village panchayat levels to ensure accountability and responsibility among both adminstrators as well as the administered.

dhanyavaad