Monday, June 14, 2010

Here's why we want Dr. Strangelove back … 

Look at these poor people … they are so emotional isn't it? The Union Carbide case (a.k.a. The Bhopal Tragedy) has upset so many victims, sympathizers of victims. They say Arjun Singh was responsible for the masterminding the escape of the CEO (Warren Anderson). Arjun Singh has conceded the responsibility on the issue. Now, my question is : if Arjun Singh is proved as an B-Grade A-hole and a disingenuous politician with virtually no responsibility for people who voted for him … at the end of the day … can we dismantle all the damage he has done to the country esp. with the reservation systems … ??? Why not? It works that way in scientific peer-review … no one gives a crap about failed theories and practices out there. My naivety seems quizzical over why politics should be any different. Back to the topic …

The political ball is being tossed all over the place now. To put the whole game in perspective … BJP and the powerless folks are attacking the Congress Government for Arjun Singh's actions and Congress googles the fact that Modi (of BJP) struck a business deal with DOW Chemicals - the very "company responsible for the tragedy". See, that's the thing … they just smear each other's faces … distract the media … create a chai-pakoda conversation at the canteen and go home. Fairly simple strategy, works extremely well in most democracies. The editorials of the national newspapers are shaking their heads in a psychedelic disbelief as they lament the retrogression of Indian democracy and the failure of representation for the common man. Common man, my ass. No wonder most political systems ever designed in most of the countries tell the common man to stick it. Meanwhile, the NGOs, women support groups are protesting against the government. Someone even wrote a letter to Obama to take charge of the situation … 

Like he's not got enough shit to deal with in his own country. Over 50 days and counting, America is reeling under the news of it's worst environmental disaster ever - shocking images of oil-bathed sea life, destroyed ecology, disappearing sea turtles, lost livelihoods of coastal population. Obama has clearly said " BP was responsible. BP will be paying the bill". BP's CEO said the same thing. His company will reimburse for the "business interruption"(Don't miss the euphemisms. Mr. George Carlin seems to nod with a gentle smile which all of his fans seem to understand) . Now they found out that all BP would be required by law to pay is 75 million dollars for damage that is running into billions of dollars. Did you hear that? Just $75 million and they are "working things" out now.

In a cartoon, the situation is equivalent to your eye-balls springing out of their cavities, your jaw dropping as your tongue darts out of your shrieking mouth as you witness an ignited firecracker in your hand and you just realize that you are already over the cliff. The gravity hasn't acted yet. You try to feel the ground by twitching and tapping your foot. You realize there is no ground to stand on. You just shrug and wait … for the inevitable … ZIPPP … THUD … BOOM … CLANG …!!! In a gangster movie instead, someone is whacked. That's instant justice. Isn't it? See, it's not personal, it's business … so says the Godfather. The BP CEO or Arjun Singh are not the problem themselves. They are merely 'accountable'. In both the cases, the situation demands that somebody somewhere needs to be bumped off. Never mind. Whom are we going to find, anyway? You know why we can't? Because the offenders now are not individual persons anymore … How do you whack someone who is not an individual.

… As Robert Reich writes in this piece, today the crime is perpetrated by corporations, financial organizations, terror networks, political systems, regulatory bodies, lobby organizations and Action Teams and what not - the crime is committed by social organisms now … no more a single person. They are at a higher level of abstraction. Our maces, bows, arrows, guns, cannon balls, fighter jets and atomic bombs are worthless. Welcome to crime 2.0. While our society has perfect defenses against single person crimes, the crime has just updated itself. Imagine crime as an organism. It just evolved into an even more deadly way to do its job. It crawled into contract documents and once again, the goddamn pen is mightier than the sword. We are left defenseless. Saddam Hussain was easy. So was Bernie Madoff. Afghanistan not so much. Isn't it?

Dr. Strangelove, What do you say? What do we do? Are you thinking what I am thinking? No, I am not a big fan of "V for Vendetta".

2 comments :

g2 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
g2 said...

Arjun Singh in a way has done more damage to the Nation than Pakistan... not surprised anymore :)

Yes, even I don't think Guy-Fawkes masked vigilante like V can do much about corporations...

May be Mr. Anderson can do something.. oh! wait, he's the one who got away with the crime :p

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