Learn the fine art of political intrigue from the Indian politician

As the debate continues in the national media about the state of security for the common man on the streets of our capital, and across numerous town and cities in the country, the 23 year old girl , the rape victim whose tragic story started this all, is being flown to Singapore because the “specialist” doctors who were treating her dont have the skills nor the technology to save her, and THAT may be the death knell for this pathetic show of a “people’s” government.

The systemic failures of our civil society are indicative of a slow rot that has set in at the very top, and this rot was set at the time of independence itself, when power was transferred to a veritable elite, educated in the UK; they will remind you of the adage- in the land of the blind ( majority, illiterate, ill equipped for leading- the common man, remember him), the one eyed ( literate, foreign , UK educated- remember Nehru?) will be king!

From the very outset at the time of taking power in the country, the ruling party of the day (The congress party), which ruled without opposition for almost 30 years, quickly understood , what it meant to rule.

The trappings of power vested in titles, in governing the common man, in ruling without accountability under the protection of a “democracy” became clear from day one, and like a man eating tiger who after making his first kill, cannot go back to hunting his traditional prey (because that is back breaking work!), these politicians have found easy pickings in “investing” in “long term career management” programs, that entail the following

  • Take sycophancy to the level of an art form, with no self respect and shame- pander to the ego massaging of he ruling elite, and leverage their power base to build your own and create your own mini , local support base.
  • Divide and rule- create divisive politics , by appealing to caste, ethnic groups, religious groups and thus ensure captive vote banks that NOT only help you drive your long term agenda, BUT also those from the ruling elite who you suck up to.
  • “Manage” the growth of development within the voting masses ( poor, semi literate, illiterate, un educated, largely rural based, easily led, or mis led)- when you actually ensure real development to a mere trickle in terms of housing, food security, infrastructure, sanitation, potable water etc in your target population, the voting masses, you can always create “illusions” of being their benefactors, and thus their REAL leaders , every 5 years, by giving them a semblance of “development” by building a toilet that works for 4 months, and then collapses, giving the politician enough time to get his vote , and then forget about his voting masses and the real issues for the next 5 years.

On the subject of issues plaguing the common man , in rural India, in urban India, the process of redress remains elusive and has remained so for the past 65 years that we have been independent.

Our judiciary has become defacto mistress to the corruption, seeded by our largely sleazy politicians,  our police forces are no more meant for protection of the common man or the voting masses, but has been reduced to a private security service for all politicians ( including those with criminal backgrounds, rape cases,  murder etc), who are ALL deemed to be VIPs, our bureaucracy lacks the courage of conviction to stand up to politicians who are either clueless or indulging in political intrigue at the expense of real , solid work for the common man, who their claim to represent!

All the above leads to classic red herrings that our politicians throw at protesters, at the common man when they take to the streets on rare occasions to vent their frustration at the ignominy that our politicians call “democracy” AND mock the basic tenets of a hallowed institution.

Some classic red herrings that our politicians deliver when confronted with street protests and peoples anger

  1. Creation of a committee, which will come back with report in 30 days- REALITY , the committee will comprise of judges who are  already tainted, non committal, or if committed, will not be provided adequate admin support to get the job delivered in the stipulated time, by which time , the politicians will have swept the issue under the carpet, taking heart from the fact that “HOPE” is the opium of the common man in India. A story of HOPE will unravel, where deadline after deadline will be conveniently missed , with politicians speaking to the common man in a calm , cool, modulated voice, and lulling the angry mob to a stupor, and after 1 year the issue will have died, and these politicians will be back in power , with the vote of voting masses!
  2. Setting up of a Judicial inquiry- REALITY -Again the same story will be repeated- more judges, more tax payers money gone down the drain, free incentives to friendly judges as a post retirement “gift”, with little on no accountability, no independence from political or bureaucratic interference , and no result even after 20 years! Again the opium of the common man will be the undoing of the real issue and the issue will die a natural death, with the politician revered as a veritable “performer” and coming back  to power, riding on the high horse of Indian democracy!
  3. I am right, he is wrong- the classic blame game- REALITY, the politician blaming the bureaucrat, the bureaucrat blaming the police, the police blaming the bureaucrat, the police against the judiciary, the politician against the judiciary! this game of Chinese checkers, is played out all too often , and gains momentum, especially at the time of a people’s crisis, when people take to the streets to demand their rights and vent their anger at the pathetic level of governance. There are enough examples that can be cited of how this classic game plan has protected corrupt, selfish, self serving politicians, police officials, bureaucrats and judiciary when the anger of the common man was such that accountability was the need of the hour, and once that was established heads would have to roll- however this successful ploy by the unholy nexus of the politician, the bureaucrat, the police and the judiciary has paid them all rich dividends, because they have always been successful in diverting the debate from the core issue, and take that totally off tangent, leading to utter confusion, and again playing on the opium of the common man, HOPE. All the drama that ensues with accusations and counter accusations exasperates the common man and best his spirit down , eventually- the politician is the master at the waiting game and he plays the game like an expert.

The Indian politician is a fine teacher to the uninitiated wannabe politician , who wants to learn the fine art of political intrigue and long term sustenance , while less said about our version of democracy the better!

I would love to hear what American senators and American thought leaders have to say about my blog.

Why do our politicians need security cover?

The events of the past 2 weeks are exposing the reality of the elected representatives of India.

Their rhetoric in venue after venue, in our parliament and in public screams that they are the real representatives of the “common man”; that is the undying love of the common man that gives them the right to represent their electorate and voice their grievances and sort their problems out. All this is good.

BUT after all this claim of having unstinting support of their people, these so called leaders need to have Z+ security.

For the uninitiated, let me explain what Z+ security really is.

It ranges all the way from 150 to 50 plus police, para military and commandos that form security “rings” around the politician , when ever , he or she moves around.

The Z+ security for ALL the politicians is paid for with my TAX DOLLARS!! the Irony is that I PAY for the pathetic, greedy, corrupt politicians security in my country, whereas I and my tax paying friends dont feel secure in my own back yard!!

Now lets address the logic of providing security for our “common man” politicians.

Why would an “extremely popular” politician need security at this lavish scale if he indeed was so popular? Isnt our politician a public figure, where he needs to be close to his electorate and to listen to their day to day problems and solve them? So if his 150 security personnel keep his electorate away from him, how does he even claim to know his electorate and to be close to them ?

The only reason such a politician can justify his requirements for Z+ security is if he has a real threat to his life.

Now lets examine if he or she indeed have a real threat to their lives…

May be yes….and you may not be surprised ….the angst of the real people as opposed to the “common man” is real and has spilled on to the streets of our capital in fury and this is the first warning sign to our “leaders” to wake up and smell the coffee!

10 Aspects of Executive Presence

Hi readers,

Over the last 18 years that I have essayed various roles in Sales and Marketing in B2B and B2C businesses, I have realized that soft skills and executive presence do make that comparative difference between a good performer and an excellent performer.

I have always maintained with my team that developing and acquiring ( improving) your soft skills, and creating executive presence was just as important as having selling skills.

Some of my ideas on what constitutes executive presence are shared here-

  1. Genuine. Open, straightforward, comfortable in your skin; no BS or sugarcoating.
  2. Passion. You love and feel strongly about what you do and how you do it.
  3. Clarity. Communicate thoughts, feelings, and insights in crystal clarity and simplicity.
  4. Intelligence. No way around this one, and yes, it shows through.
  5. Insight. Ability to boil complex factors and mounds of data down to rare conclusions.
  6. Determination. Driven and full of purpose, determined to achieve and succeed.
  7. Confidence. Not overconfident, but with enough self-doubt to be objective.
  8. Humility. Willing to admit mistakes, misjudgment, fear, and uncertainty is endearing.
  9. Courage. Willingness to take risks and take a position against considerable odds.
  10. Humor. Not over-the-top, but in the right measure, brings down other’s defenses.