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Re : Some Suggestions




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Postings not related to the writing of the Manifesto or policy chapters
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>So in effect I want a large part of pay for public office to be
"equity" >related like stock options. Stock options work only if the
stock price >is good enough. More importantly they can be a carrot and a

stick at >the same time. Especially for legislators, one can visualise
something
>like a reverse Dearness Allowance as a component of their salary ! >So
if the inflation rate goes up, their salaries go down (at least some).
>One could think of bonuses too for reaching milestones like levels of
>literacy or number of new jobs created etc. There have to be lots of
>positives for the "employees" to want this to work. And I really want
>the bonuses to be large enough to be real incentives. I cannot see >why

the Prime Minister should not make a few crores if the GDP >growth rate
goes up by 1percent ! This could work for State >Governments too with
the right economic indicators ( like Electricity >Board collections :)
).

>The plan
.should not be too complicated and should encourage transparency >like
we
>can
>see how much the CEO of a company made, in the Annual Report.

I think it is mostly a bad idea. Simply because an economy doesn't run
like a company. I believe that was the mistake the supporters of
comprehensive economic planning made: they thought they could run India
like a company. An economy (Hayek, Mises and others have called it a
catallaxy) is a complex phenomenon. We shouldn't encourage legislators
or bureaucrats to manipulate it for their own advantage. It would lead
to a dangerously dirigiste system, and the goverment would want to
interfere more and more in the economy.

What they should not be handling, why should we give them credit for?

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Are you implying that economic policy as set by the goverment does not
impact the economy ?

The issue here is not of converting to a command economy. That idea has
been
almost thoroughly discredited by years of socialism around the world.
The
issue is accountability. Think of it this way : when we pay taxes to the

government we are actually stockholders investing in our future because
my
taxes get used to create infrastructure. If our ( the stockholders in
the
nation ) money is being squandered on populistic give-aways like free
electricity, I want to hold "management" ( the government ) responsible
for it
and to pay for it. If the budget deficit keeps going up due to these
stunts,
it is not in the long term interests of my "company" ( the nation or the

state! ). Do we realise that we are facing the price for all these years
of
populism in our low stock price
( the value of the rupee !) ?

Why shouldn't we demand and get value for our money ? At the end of our
lives
we will have invested probably lakhs in the various organisations that
govern
us at various levels, beginning from municipal corporations.
A lot of our money is being frittered away and we still get slapped with
more
and more price increases at no corresponding improvements in service.
If the garbage doesn't get cleared regularly or if I don't get water for
days,
why shouldn't it result in a pay cut for all the people involved ?
I will gladly pay an education cess if I am guaranteed that it will
result in
improved literacy levels.

As I said, it is the senior-most people in government who should feel
the
pinch worst and then people will think ten times before hankering after
office
whether or not they are capable of doing the job. Just think of it, we
appoint
people to the highest posts in the management of our "company" ( the Lok
Sabha
as well as the Vidhan Sabhas ) largely on the basis of image regardless
of
whether they get the job done or not.

Pankaj Mhatre





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