Friday, May 29, 2009

Dont give them fishes!

Right from my childhood,as a south-indian chap,i was practised to watch heroes who fight for others to get red patched cheeks and favours for those they fighted for,at last. Not only me, every child is filled with aspirations to become an icon in its society that makes it to serve for others. But, unfortunately the aforesaid count plunges as they bloom. As i rose to 6 feet,I acquainted social activists and firms who submerge their profits in CSR activities, assuming to get intangibles in return.

There is another group which need to be zeroed in : - the others. Who are they?normal citizens? - a cluster which depends upon idols to work for them. The obscured shady side of those who are lingering for bigwigs to cater them. Unlfliable Butterflies that were aided to come out of cocoon.

Let me kick-off with instrinsic evolution theory of darwin - Survival for the fittest. The more competent a living being is, the higher likelihood to survive.World Lives existing today has struggled tremendously to impede from being extincted.They subsist because they dismay to death, not solely they love to live.

Ergo the real potential of someone can be known when in perils, especially when pelting for life. The real competancy that hasnt came up till that Juncture. Yes, everyone of us is filled with tremendous potential, without regard to our whereabouts and brought-ups. But by hook or by crook,we couldnt realise that, since we havent practised to USE it.
Iterating a simple example -Beggars are ubiquitous in my mother india. Envisage a situation where no-one feeds them.The aftermaths can be dreadful for them. They have to search a headspring for their existence. Eventually they will end up finding a job.Some of them may be extirpated by hunger, teaching others an important lesson - Be fit to survive. This, if escalated to poor people who's pie is high in india,can give astonishing results - net increase in productivity. The point here is neither socialism nor capitalism. The expectation of former from the latter and the service offered by the latter to the former has to be redefined.
When our northeast friends faced hiroshima - nagasaki attack, no country was ready to bail them out. What was the result now? They have hitched up to heights greater than that if they might have got pennies from neighbours.Dhirubhai ambani was a gas station attendant. Abdul khalam's child life was filled with hunger. They became heroes because they are adroit enough and not because they have been fed.
So what do most social service activists focus on? devolping infrastucture, livelihood, giving freebies etc. Yes their heart is far bigger than pacific. But their acts do have two unwelcomed aftermaths.
1. Decreasing the competancy of government and diverting the duty of political leaders giving them ways to increase their wealth by taxes we pay.The real purpose of government is diluted routing the money meant for people to swiss bank black boxes.
2. Decreasing the competancy of a citizen who can serve himself, but do not, because he is being served by someone with no effort from his side, except creating empathy.

Addressing the first issue,the desired system is government should facilitate people services through their money. If government need to do their duty it need taxes, so it has to push capitalists to pay for it.This is a cycle and should be smooth enough for a developing economy.Capitalists gain intangibles by spending in CSR in one hand and evading taxes in another hand. A recent survey says only 1 rupee out of each 3.5 rupees, that government spends for public, reaches them.This makes the entire system flawful.It is like filling water in a pot with lot of holes, through a broken tube.
If India inc is really interested in making an effective CSR, shouldnt it correct the system, rather than supporting it. Yes it can still get its intangibles. With all go-getters it has why cant it spend pennies on stablise the way things reach people? It needs guts!

Coming to the second issue,today's CSR activities and NGO's are focusing on giving fish rather than teaching how to fish. Westerners are less dependent mutually,so their competancy and so their wealth.What was the reason for sudden increase of orphanage and homes for the aged over recent years? The answer is partly their existence only.A platform is created for the unabled,encouraging their abandonment. If that had not been the case, a mother, before leaving her child abandoned and sons/daughters,before leaving their parents unsecured, shall think twice.Why cant these CSR acts & NGO's focus on developing people competencies? It doesnt necessarily mean providing education to all. But also to develop components like less-dependency and self-employment, which necessarily mean increasing per-capita productivity - smoothening the Income distribution curve - developing a sustainable economy. Implementation may be a difficult and a slow process.It has its own costs too.But can cause exponential growth. Again it needs guts!

One may say this macro level outlook may get messed up during its execution, when delved deeper and it is a regulatory job of government.Can we conclude that the quality of government is superior than corporate minds?. We cannot compare its management to that of corporations. The latter's act is due to educated minds, while the former's act is due to the so-called experienced minds, repeating the historical flaws.The latter's purpose is to increase pennies and the formers's is to retain its position. Government's acts are counteracted by opposite parties and not sure about stablisation, due to their momentry divertion of focus and to save themselves,they have to boast acts big.

So give fishing rods, teach them how to fish, But


Red carpets for comments !


  1. Very nice central theme and lucidly pointed out. But time and again, you seem to be contradicting yourself. Give them rods not the fish is fine heresay. But giving a rod itself is a favour. Govt by and large seems to act as a regulator with a purpose to bring in inclusive growth. Hence the format to tax the rich n give the poor the infra to develop. But it should be understood that such equitable growth is bound to bring in more disparity, because the poor is not equipped to work without infra. Or take it this way. Govt regulates a reservation in private firms (say). This will source new opportunities. But incompetency not only spoils the firm but the person involved. One thing that must be noted is guys dont remain rich forever. Only intelligence remains forever. Intelligent people (poor be it) will offset n take on wealth. N I feel that its the right of intelligence to claim whats due.

    Don't give even the fishing rod. He will fish if he is intelligent.

  2. There is a saying " If u born poor,it is not your fault. If u die poor, then its yours". The system must enable an ambiance(what i meant as fishing rod) to get the best out of oneself.You cannot deny the fact that it is essential even for the most competent.

  3. Nice concept n well written, but i would like to quote certain things where i felt a difference in opinion.The beggars of our country are not doing that out of choice.Some are too old to work, may be some are not physically fit to do any work n may be some dont get work,,Yes there are fit and healthy people in the group but it will be only a very few.A major chunk of them are left with no choice.Beggars' situation is not like what is shown in tamil cinemas as they have mobile phones, hefty bank balance and other stuff.I have seen some of them who tried to get a job(any small job) but didnt get either due to unemployment or unemployability.So they land up in doing the same thing which they used to do so that they get a minimum assurance of food...Also the difference between philanthrophy and CSR needs to be understood.We need to create a platform for them to comeup in life before stopping any philanthrophic activities.First we need to teach them how to fish, then provide a fishing rod to all and then only we can stop providing fish to them.Till then its the duty of the others to support the unemployable people..

  4. @Jegashree

    I feel that this could be a misnomer. Protecting beggers definitely created more beggers. We are not talking about the physically under previleged. Even otherwise...

    I am sure you will dissent..

  5. @Jegashree

    Thanks a lot for your comment.
    The following may be the reasons why mendicants don't prevail in developed countries.

    1.Government has a ban on it
    2.Philanthrophy is comparitively lesser or not practiced THIS way.
    3.There are no groups which 'make' people 'disabled' or rent children, exploiting the aforesaid philanthropy, making begging a commercial activity.
    4.Physically-challenged souls of those countries practice ways to be self-dependent.There are specimens of them who effectuated a lot more than normal masses could do.

    If philanthropy is practiced more in india, can we say demises due to starvations and unemployability is less here?Unfortunately it is far higher.Economic conditions cannot be blamed as it is mutually dependent with the competency levels of citizens.We need to cogitate on it.

  6. well guys both of ur points were too gud and un deniable, but i felt both were not neutral too.

    tacking the positive side of philanthropy - we could conclude tat giving a helping hand would improve the social / economical standard of the country over a period of time. But Human beings are the most clever animals which will always find a loop hole in any system. Typically people will learn to utilize all the help given and try to avoid working hard if they know the help is certain till they improve.
    ultimate result of philathropy would count the lazy fellows' number up.

    Where as GIVING NOTHING might demoralize the energetic souls (atleast to a little extent) but the most handsome outcome of it would be "people will aquaint the rule DO OR DIE soon". but aids to the right persons always have higher potential for improvement.

    Hence can we have a conclusion that a goverment should have faith in helping the right ones and turing every one in to the right ones catagory.

    My point is that help should be given to the ones who are to take the pain and over a period of time every one wil come to know NO PAIN GIVES NO GAIN..!