[Reader-list] On the death of the Internet awki (Rakesh Iyer)

Kshmendra Kaul kshmendra2005 at yahoo.com
Tue Sep 8 17:04:47 IST 2009

Some thoughts. Random thoughts. Perhaps uneducated thoughts.
Whatever Amartya Sen or Gandhi may or may not say, the 'rich' should be encouraged to spend; spend as much as they can; encouraged to spend within the country. That is one good way of spreading wealth with some degree of 'trickle down'
To 'tax' expenditure is foolish economics. "Conspicuous Multiple Taxation" only encourages 'avoidance of declarations', 'benami transactions', 'hoarding of currency', 'flight of capital' and 'unproductive investment such as in gold-bars'.
"Wasteful consumption" would be pertinent for such "sustenance elements" as "food". The 'rich' cannot consume 'food' beyond a certain limit which is no different from the 'non-rich'. 'Food shortages' arise out of mismanaging 'inputs for agriculture', hoarding by 'Private' traders and mismanagement of Regulatory Pricing; Procurement; Stocking; Distribution by the State. Inability to 'buy food' even when available has nothing to do with 'consumption' by the 'rich'.
Other inputs for "Decent Living' such as Clothes, Residence, Sanitation; Healthcare, Education, Employment have very little to do with how much the 'rich' consume of those elements.
Availability of two other elements needed for "Decent LIving", Water and Electricity could perhaps be affected by how much of those the 'rich' consume. I wonder though to what extent if (perhaps) not more than 5% of the population could possibly indulge themselves in being able to afford 'excessive wasteful consumption'
Enterprise and Entrpreneurship should be encouraged. Regulatory mechanisms should ensure that there is a 'level playing field', that Profiteering is not resorted to, that Cartelisation is not allowed, that there is Fair Pricing (not hostage to Demand/Supply influences), that there are Fair Wages (not hostage to Demand/Supply influences)   

--- On Mon, 9/7/09, Rakesh Iyer <rakesh.rnbdj at gmail.com> wrote:

From: Rakesh Iyer <rakesh.rnbdj at gmail.com>
Subject: Re: [Reader-list] On the death of the Internet awki (Rakesh Iyer)
To: "Patrice Riemens" <patrice at xs4all.nl>
Cc: reader-list at sarai.net
Date: Monday, September 7, 2009, 6:01 PM

Dear Patrice

The point I am making has larger implications actually even beyond Internet.
The fact is that our consumption pattern today is completely unsustainable
over a longer duration of time. What the British established during the
Industrial Revolution, was a model which was based on making people greedy
and thereby consuming resources to consume as much as they can, and the way
to achieve this was possible thanks to colonization. Which is why Gandhi had
once remarked that already the British required more than half the earth to
satisfy their own greed, and if India were to follow suit, it will be a

Hence, there has to be a limit to how we consume. I find it strange that the
Ambanis have built a huge mansion while having only four people. Ironically,
people like Amartya Sen may say that Ambani has the freedom to do it and he
should be allowed to do it, but I think wasteful consumption of resources
this way in the name of freedom is something we can't allow and we should
tax heavily. A certain amount of consumption is fine, but beyond that, if
you want to use your freedom, pay for it. That should be one of the
important lessons required for sustainable development.


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