The Indian Economy Blog

November 14, 2005

“Robbing Peter To Pay Paul”

Filed under: Miscellaneous,Politics — Amit Varma @ 4:54 pm

DNA speaks to Prakash Karat and comes away with the conclusion that the left is going to continue pushing the policies that have failed India for the last 58 years: redistributing wealth instead of generating it.


  1. On another post on this blog someone commented that democracy is 51% imposing their will on 49%. You don’t even need the 51%, do you?

    Comment by Ashok Hegde — November 14, 2005 @ 5:21 pm

  2. More precisely, distributing poverty.

    Comment by sv — November 14, 2005 @ 9:05 pm

  3. Heh. True, Ashok. True, SV. Sigh.

    Comment by Amit Varma — November 14, 2005 @ 10:15 pm

  4. Interesting to revisit Surjit Bhalla’s column from just four months ago

    Comment by Prashant Kothari — November 14, 2005 @ 10:57 pm

  5. Does it look like Manmohan Singh (a good man) has made a faustian deal with the left? History will judge his legacy and one hopes at some point he will follow his convictions rather than the path of political convenience.

    Comment by Vivek G — November 14, 2005 @ 11:31 pm

  6. I’m not sure how much of a man of conviction Manmohan really is. I’ve been reading some old pre-liberalisation speeches and writings of his recently, and in all of them he determinedly sits on the fence, saying pretty much nothing and not taking a stand. Had the balance-of-payments crisis not existed in 1991, I doubt the reforms would have happened out of conviction.

    That said, one can never tell for sure from the outside. It could also be that, like Arun Shourie in the BJP govt, he’s decided that some reforms are better than no reforms, and he’ll be pragmatic and hang on in there and do whatever little he can. But he isn’t doing terribly much, and the Left and Sonia seem to be running the country together. That’s a worry.

    There’s a no question, though, that he’s a good man. But goodness alone doesn’t generate prosperity and employment.

    Comment by Amit Varma — November 15, 2005 @ 11:03 am

  7. The common minimum programme talks about devolving full managerial and commercial autonomy to the profit making Public sector undertakings operating in competetive environment.It will interesting to know how CPM or the left front proposes to achieve that without resorting to creeping privatisation

    Comment by aak — November 15, 2005 @ 2:34 pm

  8. Thanks Amit. You are right. Goodness does no resolve poverty (sigh!). The PM is known to be an admirer of Mrs Thatcher. If only he had her courage of conviction and acumen.

    Comment by Vivek G — November 15, 2005 @ 4:07 pm

  9. Was it Churchill who said socialism means distributing misery equally?

    Comment by Sandeep — November 15, 2005 @ 5:58 pm

  10. manmohan singh is a good man ? what does that mean.?it’s been eighteen months since he took over and we haven’t seen a single sign of his having a mind of his own, leave alone a good one. the left pushed through the extravagant employment guarantee act, blocked every effort to increase investment in key sectors, hiked ‘security’ for organized sector employees and generally pushed its own agenda through the government without actually being a part of it. manmohan singh has finally succeded in making the prime minister’s post just as ceremonial as the president’s.

    Comment by kuffir — November 15, 2005 @ 6:46 pm

  11. “manmohan singh is a good man ? what does that mean?”

    Nothing in the context of being PM. Agree with everything you said, kuffir.

    Comment by Amit Varma — November 15, 2005 @ 6:52 pm

  12. Manmohan Singh a Good Man

    Well he is a good man I believe(n i stand by them). Kindly remember the 1991 opening of the Indian Market when he, Chidambaram and Narsimha Rao were there at the centre.

    As of now, I personally feel he never expected to be the PM.(who knows he may have not anticipated the Congress to win- which is a different matter). But he’s being made a scapegoat between the Congress,the politics(votebank included), 23 party UPA n fools in the same such as Lalu and Mayawati w/o whom the coalition would crash down. The same goes for Chidambaram. Though a good intellectual, he’s also made to be “just another minister” in the UPA.

    Comment by Rahul M — November 20, 2005 @ 10:21 pm

  13. Sorry for joining late. You guys are doing a fantastic job – spreading awareness about democracy, economy, Manmohan Singh (the little, poor, duhlin’), left. Someone said, the ruler did not like the people, impeached them and got a new people to be elected by. I guess that should be our goal. As if it was not bad enough living in a poor country – now we have blokes on TV talking about those bhikharis too. O World Bank, where art thou?

    Comment by aman k — December 1, 2005 @ 7:55 pm

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