As I reflect on my past life, I am faced with the harsh reality that success has eluded me for three quarters of a century. Even in the field of Corruption, which has been the subject of study by me for over half a century, I have been a failure. I haven't amassed a fortune through this route though it looks so easy, nor have I become a celebrity, like Anna Hazare, by exposing and fighting this phenomenon. However, since the whole nation is agitated on the issue, I am motivated to add my voice.
Like pollution, which is the right material in the wrong place, Corruption is the right wealth in the wrong hands used for the wrong purpose. The first lesson in Corruption is that money / wealth must first be created. Governments have learnt the art of making money --- they make it by the process called "Printing". The rising prices have nothing to do with improved quality, value or performance --- nothing whatsoever. It is connected with the performance and overtime work put in at the government printing press. To prevent the money put into circulation from causing inflation, the governments take it out again by way of taxes. Fortunately in India we are more enlightened than in USA where the TEA [Taxed Enough Already] Party has emerged to prevent the government from Right wealth in wrong hands raising taxes. The Indians take out the excess money in circulation themselves. The old practice of hiding this under the mat- tress has long since gone out of vogue and the tax havens, which have emerged around the world, enable the smart Indian to keep it out of the hands of the government, which would in any case waste it.
Modern education teaches the basic principle that anything and every service can be converted into one common, understandable unit MONEY. From earliest times we have seen that Sex has been a money spinner when apples were used as the medium of exchange. But today even the care and education of children and senior citizens call for a lot of money. So money has to be generated to meet all one's needs. In the good old days we pitied the poor government servant for the pit- tance they got for their services and the thoughtful citizen made up for it with Baksheesh or tip for the services rendered. The various Pay Commissions have changed all this. Today, I understand that in retirement a government servant could get in hand more than what he was getting while in service. The rates for getting things done have kept pace with the in- creases given by the Pay Commissions. If the commission given by you for a service doesn't match up to the expectations you face the possibility of your voluntary offering being sarcastically turned down.
India has been the birth place of many religions --- There are hundreds of religions practiced by the tribals and thousands of Gods. There are also the well established religions of Hinduism,Buddhism Like pollution, which is the right material in the wrong place, Corruption is the right wealth in the wrong hands used for the wrong purpose. The first lesson in Corruption is that money / wealth must first be created. Today a new religion is emerging and being created by our elected representatives. It is termed as Indian Democracy. The quintessence of this new religion are:
"All your sins past and future will be forgiven if you get elected or work for the government. Nobody can accuse you of any wrong doing. You have been raised above the mortals of this world. Unfortunately entry is restricted to just a few and there is a heavy price to be paid to get admission to the club. You must show this ability even before you can even at- tempt to get membership.
" Your behavior will never catch up on you. It will take an eternity before any- one can find out what you really did or didn't do. The truth will be buried under a mountain of documents some of which may disappear and disintegrate with time. "The tax havens are temples / sanctuaries which no one can violate to discover what you have hidden there.
"On the principles on which this religion is founded there is no opposition --- All parties are in full agreement and there is no such thing as a minority, all are in it together.
"Like in all religions there are pre- scribed rituals like the share that must go to each layer in the value chain.
Unfortunately, I have passed the expiry date to get admission to this new religion.
By F Lobo: E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org