Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Politics influences every individual,common man though you are not involved

Dear Readers, (Caution: Very useful and detailed Post).
We have been frustrated by experimenting so many methods for evading the corruption, poverty and security lapse etc in our country, though we have changed the political parties etc but the result we gained is moderate or nil sometimes. This is all because we have very  shallow understanding of the governance system. In today's India, we have multiple political parties with no goals but merely speaking about the welfare of people. Have we ever put a question how those false propaganda or manifestations are going to be achieved by them? The answer is no, i will detail briefly about this in my next blog "Get Interested, Get Informed, Get Involved".
Also though you run away or doesn't take part,involve or at-least aware of the governance system you will be indirectly affected by the politics,because politics decides policies for our citizens.If you are travelling outside India then you are indirectly bounded or influenced by the politics,a Japanese can travel to U.S.A without visa where as Indian cannot this is the political or policy understanding between the two nations.Like wise in many cases though we run away from politics,we will be indirectly bounded to it.So being politically literate is essential.

***************Politics determines policy, and policy determines our lives

We all want to bring about social change through Dharna, fasting, civil dis-obedience, strikes, and some through violent measures etc. In today’s talk I will argue that among all the options, public policy is the most effective tool for real, lasting social and economic change in this country, which I vehemently stress all educated youths of this nation should be well aware of this.

Also it impacts whether our children will be around to look after us in our old age; whether we will be taken quickly to hospital after a hit-and-run road accident – indeed, whether there will be an emergency vehicle available at all or even whether a hospital will exist; whether we will find a job; whether we will find a house to live in; whether our street will have functioning drains; and so on. Virtually everything in our lives is determined by politics, even how we respond to relentless terrorism. We neglect politics only at great peril.

The difference between the life of citizens in genuinely free countries and in India boils down to the difference in the quality of politics in these countries. It is therefore better to control politics than to let it control us. Our actions today: whether we choose the politics of freedom, or connive with the politics of collectivism and corruption, will determine our future.

Let us have a brief look at public policy.

What is public policy? A public policy is a law or rule that is enforced by any level of government, whether central, state, or local. Our activist judiciary also makes public policy: that all public transport in Delhi must run on CNG, for example, was a Supreme Court decree.Governments frequently makes broad statements about the future direction of development in a sector, also generally called ‘policy.’ The New Education Policy of 1986 or the Telecom Policy of 1994 are examples of ‘policy’ in this sense. Various tiers of government also formulate a variety of schemes and programs. When I say ‘public policy,’ I include all of the above: schemes, programs, sectoral Policies, rules, regulations, laws, as well as judicial policy-decisions.

Who makes policy? It is clear from the above definition of public policy that it is made by different tiers of government as well as the judiciary. (IAS officers under each ministry)

Who is affected by public policy? By penalizing some forms of behavior and rewarding others, policies change the costs and benefits of different directions of action. Policies can be thought of as ‘rules of the game’ of everyday life. These rules affect the way people choose to pursue their goals and thus influence

the combined, overall, and unintended results of everyone’s actions. Policies mainly affect the individuals under the jurisdiction of the government that makes and enforces the rules. However, as we shall see in a moment, who exactly is effected by policies and how is not as clear and straightforward as you might expect.

Who influences public policy? This is an interesting and serious question nowadays. The first answer people usually give is that, in a democracy, citizens influence policy. This is true. In a representative system of government, policy makers’ ability to hold office ultimately rest on their ability to acquire votes from their constituents.However, to have a deeper understanding of who influences policy, we must ask: who has an interest in the outcome of a policy?

Policies create benefits and costs to different groups. Individuals in these groups thus have an incentive to try to influence the final shape of the policy environment. It is important to realize that this incentive is greater for some groups than others. Definite groups, such as businesses in the same industry, unions, bureaucrats, lobby to influence policies in their favor. They plead with politicians for a policy and give money for campaigns, perhaps even direct or indirect bribes of one kind or another. Groups that experience highly concentrated benefits or costs and that can easily organize their members will tend to have a greater influence on policy.2So-called ‘special interest groups’ are also more likely to know how policies will affect them than average citizens are. As a consequence, in a democracy (where politicians compete for votes),

“Most policies are constructed to favor particular groups, but may not actually be beneficial to the greater population.”
This is where the crony capitalist are developed, market becomes narrow, and monopolistic where small business are tampered and perished.
The above is the reason why certain business houses and magnets buy the politicians who favor them and the result is tragedy like Coal gate scam,2G Spectrum and Karnataka mines scam as the list keep on going without end, so I stop here voluntarily.

Let me give a quick example of the power of public policy:

�The Indian Forest Act classifies bamboo as a tree. All the rules that apply to trees apply to bamboo and the Forest Department controls its use. As a result, only some connected contractors have access to forest bamboo. If it were classified as a grass, however, as it scientifically is, then the bamboo would be out of the Forest Department’s control. Tribal would be able to access it as a resource to earn their livelihood. A large-scale use of bamboo would also save trees and timber, a tremendous environmental benefit. 

To bring about this policy change, CCS ran a campaign: Bamboo is Not a Tree.

�1. What would be the impact of this small change in policy? It would help millions of tribals all over the country whom we do not even know. It might save millions of trees too. That is the power of public policy.Like wise there are so many public polices which are not reviewed properly favoring one section of wealth class and certain policies does not have even sunset clause which has now become dangerous like caste based reservations.

In addition to groups that attempt to influence policies for their own material benefit, there are also policy or idea organizations called ‘think tanks.’ Think tanks advocate for one kind of policy rather than another, not because of material benefits or costs to themselves, but because they believe certain policies are morally superior and/or more effective in promoting the interests of the general population. Centre for Civil Society is an example of such an organization. To my best of knowledge I stringently bolster a team called Freedom team of India which has high class well experienced elites working with clear long term vision for India on world best public policy required for this nation in a very structured way,pls get informed and visit at http://freedomteam.in/blog/main


1. � An excerpt from Center for civil society, Social change and Public policy by Parth shah.

2. CCS-Center for civil society, Newdelhi, web www.ccs.in.

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