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In which John Galt moves to India

Posted by anandrr on January 6, 2008

Successive state and central governments in India have believed that it is their responsibility to deliver all manner of services. Governments therefore are involved in electricity generation and distribution, law and order, public transport, water, telephones, banks, and every other thing you might expect the Government to be involved in. Curiously the Government was never involved in delivering health care or education. Or rather it was involved, but it was never the only source for those things, and most people used the private sector for education and health anyway.

However, while it used to be that only the Government would provide many of those services, India today is a Republican wet dream. The Government hasn’t yet gotten out of these industries, but most people trust the private sector to provide the real service, that it’s a wonder the Government still wants to provide them.

  • Electricity: Anybody serious about having electricity delivered reliably has their own private diesel generator. Imagine the size of Infosys’s private generation system, probably puts the state of Karnataka’s generation system to shame
  •  Security: Everybody has their own private security fellow sitting at the gate/office entrance “guarding the premises.”
  • Transport: Many employers provide their own bus/taxi service to ensure that their employees can get to work on time reliably and safely.
  • Water: Of course the corporation can’t provide enough water or even clean water so we have a booming business in water delivered by the tankful, by the bottle and every other way imaginable, not to mention wells at every construction.
  • Telephones: The number of BSNL/MTNL landlines installed in India is actually coming down as people realise that all you really need is a cell phone. What’s more even landlines are now installed by private companies and nobody who wants instant installation and service bothers with the Government monopoly. AirTel seems to be the big success here.
  • Banks: For a long time now, people have flocked to private banks for all their services, ICICI Bank is the big success here.
  • Finally in healthcare and education, we’ve always been very private sector oriented. Government healthcare and education is a joke. The rich people get the best services, the middle class gets middling services, the rest get poor services, just as it should be in any proud capitalist society.

All in all, for all our socialist leanings, Mitt Romney would be so at home. And of course we would never care for Mike Huckabee.

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2 Responses to “In which John Galt moves to India”

  1. Jon Phillips said

    Any “international” take on Obama? Does anyone outside the states care yet?

  2. anandrr said

    Ha! International takes on Obama are all to be seen through the filter of people who don’t care enough yet. So The Times of India editorialised saying that just as Americans want change, we Indians too should demand change and throw the ruling gerontocracy out and demand youth and change. The Hindu, a Communist mouthpiece if ever there was one, (try that on your onion, a Communist mouthpiece named for a religion), was neutral, it merely suggested that Huck didn’t have a chance beyond Iowa and that Edwards might have come in second but he didn’t have a chance anyway.

    Mostly Benazir and her kin are hogging the headlines. Until today when we’re all up in arms against the racism of the umpires during our cricket tour of Australia. Wake us up when you know who your nominees are.

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