An Open Letter To Prime Minister Manmohan Singh

Editor’s note: While this letter came in to us a little past the time that PM Manmohan Singh gave his remarks, we wanted to make sure that this open letter went out to the world.  We also wanted to remind Americans that their politics are far from the only corrupt politics out there.  That is to say; there are important and cruel and stupid things happening all over the world.  – Subversify Staff
Dear Mr “Prime Minister”,

In a few hours from now, early tomorrow  morning, you will stand on the ramparts of the Red Fort in Delhi and  speak to the nation, telling us all about our independence and the  problems your government intends to solve until you come up to the same  spot again next year (if you still occupy the post then), and tell us  again how your government is going to solve the same problems – just as you did last year, and the year before that, and the year before.

Well, Mr “Prime Minister”, I’d like to say a few words to you.

Who am I? Nobody special. Nobody famous.  I’m just one of the faceless millions. One of those who need to exist  just so the rich and famous and influential can revel in how rich and  famous and influential they are. After all, how will the Great Chiefs  know that they are Great Chiefs, unless they can look down and see all  the ordinary Native Americans?

From my position at the bottom of the same  totem pole of which you inhabit a place close to the top, Mr “Prime  Minister”, my voice will not reach you. Therefore, please feel free to  ignore me – but I will have my say anyway. On this day of all days, the  eve of the anniversary of our so-called independence, I will have my say.

So, before I go any further, Mr “Prime Minister”, let me tell you right out – you are a disgrace.

You are a disgrace, first, because you hold  a position to which you were never elected. You are as aware as I am  that you are not an elected leader – that you have never won even a  municipal level election, and that you violated the law when you first  were “selected” to the Upper House seat you now occupy.

You are a disgrace, as well, because you do  not exert authority over the ministers among whom you are allegedly the  “prime”. You are aware – who in this nation is not  aware? – that you lead the worst, most corrupt government we have ever  known, a government which is so awful that it makes the previous  Hindunazi government look good, a government so awful that even the  long-suffering people of India have had enough. You are as well aware as  I am that it’s only by police raids, slander, petty harassment, legal  sleight-of-hand, and reneging on promises that you have so far stopped  the situation from blowing up in your face.

You are a disgrace, thirdly, because you  don’t take responsibility for the actions of your colleagues. So far,  you have moved against the corrupt only with extreme reluctance, when  you have had no other option, and you have done as little as possible  while only stating that you are tied by the “compulsions of coalition  politics”. While I am not one of the people who voted for your party  (not for you – nobody voted for you,  because you do not dare stand for election, of course) I do know that  those who did vote for it don’t think this is a reasonable excuse. Being  the prime minister (or, in your case, the “prime minister”) means that  you are supposed to take responsibility for the actions of all – that  means all – your colleagues.  It’s not good enough to say you didn’t know or that your hands are tied  by political factors. If you can’t fill the role, stand down.

Which brings me to the next  reason you are a disgrace. As we all know, you are not your own man.  You were put in your position as a chair warmer, until the Heir Apparent  of the political dynasty which treats your party as its personal  property was ready to take over. You’ve said as much on more than one  occasion. It’s looking unlikely that the Heir Apparent will ever  formally take over your position, though – he, and his family, would  rather rule through you and let you take the flak while they (or, more  specifically, he) take the  credit. I am as aware as you that on more than one occasion you’ve  announced a policy only to have it overturned by pronouncements from the  dynasty. If you had any integrity, you would have resigned rather than  be vetoed by someone who has no constitutional role in the government.  But I’m pretty certain that you don’t have the authority to make your  own decisions about quitting. You’ll go when you are permitted to – not before.

You are, Mr “Prime Minister”, as we’ve been told ad nauseam,  a “great economist”. I don’t, as I freely admit, know much about  economics. But I assume even an average economist will know that  endlessly repeating a mantra about “growth” wears thin after a while  when prices zoom skywards, year after year after year, and your  government – which is primarily responsible for the policies that  cause those prices to rise – claims that it does not know why it is  happening, and has nothing to say except “assurances” that those prices  will come down eventually. Nor are the people impressed by your claim  that you aren’t taking steps against corruption because you don’t want  to impose the costs of another election on the nation – even a  non-economist can do the arithmetic and inform you that the costs of  another election are infinitesimal compared to the loot your government  is perpetrating on the nation every day it clings to power. Forgive me  if I do not understand how any economist ignores these factors.

Again, I’m as well aware as anyone else of  your reputation for personal honesty. I won’t impugn it because I can’t  prove that you have ever taken a bribe yourself, and I don’t wish to  indulge in libel. While I’d like to point out that you would be  extraordinarily stupid to take bribes personally  rather than have a bagman from your party collect them for you, let me  assume that you’re clean as far as illegal gratuities are concerned. But  while remaining personally clean, Mr “Prime Minister”, you preside over  a government which has systematically sabotaged probes against the  corrupt and which is rotten with corruption all the way down to the  basement. If I might offer an analogy, Mr “Prime Minister”, would you  absolve a security guard at a warehouse who watched silently while the  said warehouse was robbed bare, even if he didn’t personally benefit by a  penny from it? No? Then how do you absolve yourself?

Then, lest I forget, Mr “Prime Minister”,  may I remind you of your government’s extreme affinity for Big Business?  Isn’t it true that you have systematically removed people who are not  business oriented – people who actually still maintain shreds of loyalty  to your party’s socialistic past – from positions of power, and  replaced them with nonentities and corporate rubber stamps? Have you not  very recently replaced the only effective environment minister in a  long time, someone who had taken a few steps against the corporate loot  of national resources, against the destruction of what remains of the  environment, with a nonentity who can be relied on to do precisely as  she is told? Am I out of line if I wonder how many millions in funding  will flow into your party’s war chest from grateful industrialists and  mining concerns in the next two years, as you prepare to face the next  election?

And, yes, Mr “Prime Minister”, how can I  forget that you have abandoned all pretence of a foreign policy in  exchange for an American policy? How can I forget that you are the  person who hugged the egregious war criminal George W Bush and assured  him that the people of India (whom you do not dare face in an election)  “love” him? Do you want me to ignore the fact that you have gone out of  your way to ruin our relations with our old friend, Iran, and sabotaged  the pipeline that would have supplied us with natural gas and reduced  our energy bills, entirely on the US’ orders? Should I forget that your  government has sucked up to the Americans for all it’s worth in order to  be granted a nuclear supplies waiver – while the rest of the world is  stepping back from nuclear energy, and Fukushima  has demonstrated just how dangerous meltdowns can be? I’m sorry, but I  cannot, and will not, ignore any of that.

Lastly, and most unforgivably, Mr “Prime Minister”, this is why you are a disgrace:  you have presented us with a situation where the only alternative to  your ultra-corrupt kleptocracy government are the Hindunazis, who are  even more viciously right-wing, Islamophobic, and intolerant; whom the  people of India rejected in 2004 and again in 2009, but whom they will vote  back next time round because they have no other choice. And now that  you have blazed a trail, will the Hindunazis – no slouch in the  corruption game, themselves – not take the opportunity to match your  government bribe for bribe? Just how much long-term damage have you done  to the nation, Mr “Prime Minister”?

As I said, you are free to ignore me, Mr  “Prime Minister”, because I am far too low on the totem pole for you to  bother. And ignore me you undoubtedly will, because I am under your  radar, and will remain under your radar.

However, you, Mr “Prime Minister”, will remain a disgrace.

(Un)happy Dependence Day.

                                                                                  Yours Uncordially
 
                                                                                    Bill the Butcher