Am exploring the State of our Modern Union, to celebrate human life which is fast approaching a digital world, of Big Brother episodes!
The writer of Business Sutra working towards the ultimate goal of a reasonable State, explains, “So you have the all-powerful God (the state), the commandment (the Constitution), and the prophet (the prime minister) who is supposed to lead the enslaved people to the Promised Land of development, prosperity and peace. The prophet’s power is supposed to be regulated by God’s archangels (opposition, bureaucracy, judiciary, army, and media)”. So currently we have Mr. Modi as the PM in India, who hob nobs with other Global leaders like Trump, Putin, May, Merkel on a regular basis. He still has a distance with Chairman Xi of China and his immediate State neighbor’s leaders, none of whom he truly gets along with, except tiny Bhutan. The BJP is a nationalist party and the policies of his government and a history of distrust in the sub-continent, do not make for very neighborly trade exchanges. Unlike NAFTA between US and its neighbors which led to great prosperity, the sub-continent is carved by a colonial knife of differences in faith and opportunity. It is unable to become a global player in International Trade due to petty differences, which hold back development of open trade and borders, where it historically excelled for many millennia.
It feels like ‘Big Brother’ is coming to the Indian State, as it is pushed into modernity against its own free will, crying and bemoaning past freedoms. Adhaar card issuance is a tremendous feat, as it allows the government to track a majority of its households, into one system digitally. Artificial intelligence can now be used to do analytics on this huge database. Modi plans to use its power “to regulate human behavior, make people good through policies and taxation that would ensure there is fair distribution of wealth and power and a fair access to opportunities”. In this diabolic plot the leading Agency is planning to collect and pool data from central ministries and state governments into a central Big Data pool. This most intrusive gathering of its citizens data is aimed to aid more informed policy making (Real Big Brother is yet to come). “NITI Aayog is working on a plan to develop the National Data & Analytics Platform” which is going to look and feel a lot like Big Brother is watching you all the time.
Demonetization brought majority of the nation’s currency into its nationalized banks, effectively digitizing it and bringing it into the open economy. The E-Bills and GST has digitized the logistics and movements of goods and trade, across the nation and has augmented, existing digital tax collection. There are numerous employment and housing schemes under Mahatma Gandhi’s name and State and Central schemes which track rural workers and their income digitally. The ability of God to command the Hindu people, and to allow Modi to lead them to the Promised Land, seems just another digital election away.
With the anointing of the next Chairman Xi, the Chinese Politburo have declared him their prophet for the coming decades. This is the same Politburo which has led China on the path to be the greatest nation state, by building out magnificent National projects. Their central and state planning efforts have created one of the greatest growths in GDP, seen in modern times. They have risen from a regional sleepy economy, into one that will lead the world by the 2050’s, if its plans go well. The Chinese are getting richer and will continue to do so, in an autocratic communist State. The Mandarins in Beijing still track output, trade, population and social metrics in a very thorough and digitized manner. The great counting and enumeration that the Chinese have always been so great at, is now taking on a new meaning for its citizens. The State knows them better now, than what they know about their own State. A hegemonic China is now reaching across Asia, Africa and the world, to bring its public corporations and digital systems to the rest of the world.
The Land of the Rising sun has discovered Abe as its prophet, and Abenomics is practised, across this digitally connected land.
President Trump has an 86% favorability rating amongst Republicans, in a recent poll on TV. The unleashing of Trade Wars by his administration, is like watching Disney roll out Star Wars Prequels or Sequels, as one is never sure which one is better. China (Trump vs Xi) is going toe to toe in the global ring, in a tit for tat, by announcing more tariffs on more goods, as either side issues more retaliations. Nobody knows where it is going and even Wall Street is volatile and disturbed. For that matter most of the citizens do not know where their nation is going, due to the steady volatility in the turnover in Administrative leaders like Cohn, who advocated against this madness. The world is cheering the bold moves, but hoping cooler heads will prevail and it will all fizzle out, to become status quo in the end.
The Russian elections have similarly extended the rule of their current prophet Putin. He rules with an iron fist over his domains, and occasionally aids in neighboring Crimea and Syria. His rule is despised by the West, but he plods on with the Great Russian proletariat on his back. He will carry them on his wide naked shoulders, to their promised land, and none may oppose him or else. Expulsion of Diplomats or more sanctions will not stop him from reaching out and doing his will, as this Bear can hibernate for long periods, and still come back stronger.
In conclusion I declare that the State of our union is strong. We have great leaders amongst our people, and I could go on and on extolling their virtues, to the high heavens. It is only the plight of the poorest of our poor, which stops me from bemoaning the sorry state, we are in. It is my reverent belief, that a time will come in our future, when we will all be alive and equal in faith, opportunity, happiness and humanity. Blessed are those who are in sorrow, as they will once again be happy. We have just started this journey and many more milestones are ahead of us. The reign of Man has just started and our blue planet is our only home, in the vast surrounding space. The universe awaits us and may we journey gloriously, and with us bring the greatest qualities, of compassion and peace. Our Cosmos still remains our final frontier, as the Promised Land. It is up to us to become free and live unto our potential. Let us seek out our glorious destiny, from this grim present.