Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Having said that, there has to be some way poverty is addressed. Time and again targeted subsidies and doles have been misappropriated and the targeted people left out.
Well I am a layman and not expected to understand this.

UBI

I lived for a short time in a village near Ooty where my husband taught at an engineering college for two years. The students from the college had gone to a tribal village in the forests for an NSS program.  On the Sunday of the week they were there, we went to visit them just to give them some encouragement. They lecturer in charge said that the villagers would not help the students in anyway when they cleaned the village, they just watched- they thought the students were working to pay off debt to the government. The men of the village were all at home watching programs on the free TV given by the government, living in the free house provided by the government, eating the 1 rupee rice and 2 rupee dal. No one went for work.
This is the effect of freebies, able bodied men not working because they have enough food, shelter without working.
Meanwhile, tea estates were closing down in that area, with only the big players like Tata and UNITEA able to manage the labour shortage. There's severe labour shortage in the Nilgiris.

The proposed UBI may also do that. 

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Some help needed

Some people do read my blog. So, dear reader,  the stats of my blog say the pageviews for my blog has suddenly gone up 10 fold or more. Usually, when I do not post much as is the case in the recent past, I get bout 400/500 pageviews, and when i post often, I get 1200/1500 page views per month. Suddenly this has become 7000 per month  and about 200 daily, even when I don't post anything. This is just unbelievable. I am not sure if it is just error in stats or some malware. Hence I appeal to anyone who can tell me if there's some malware activity and should I worry about it.

Monday, 9 January 2017

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/watch-meryl-streep-accept-cecil-b-demille-award-golden-globes-2017-961510

A speech by Meryl Streep about Trump. 

Sunday, 8 January 2017

I watch a TV series called Blue Bloods. It is about the New York police. The latest episode has a point that has always worried me. It is about recruiting into the NYPD, the questionaire asks if the potential recruit has ever fired a weapon on another person and if so, did he or she feel remorse. If the answer is "Yes", he may not be recruited since it is not desirable to recruit into the police force, a local gang member who has killed someone and not even regretted it.
However, there are soldiers who after serving in Afghanistan and Iraq, are now discharged from the military and are applying to the NYPD to join as police officers. They are trained to kill the enemy and not feel remorseful for the killing. That's their training. So these young men lie when answering the questionaire.
Now this is of course fiction. But it is a serious issue that I have always worried about. The army trains its men to fight enemies. To kill any enemy without hesitation. To shoot first, and not think about it. That training is essential to stay alive and active in the army. This training is very good and deeply ingrained into soldiers at a young age.
But when the government uses these same men to fight inside the country, to fight their own people, it is expecting these men to forget their training and act otherwise because you do not want them to shoot first. How can you expect them to undo training which is designed to be not undone?

The police are supposed to be trained differently, to ask before shooting, to look upon miscreants as their own people, albeit criminal, to not shoot except as a last resort. They must be trained well in crowd control, in detective work, in managing people, in minimising fallout of disputes in preventing mishaps, in traffic control etc etc.
Just as the police cannot do the work of the soldier, the soldier must not do the work of the police.
Governments must stop using the army for police work. It is harmful to the country, to the army and to the people.