Tag Archives: wealth

Marxism and the Corporate World

Marxism and the Corporate World

Marxism and the Corporate World

Being born in a communist family I was always educated about the marxism and what Karl Marx taught about socialism. Somehow as an youngster i sort of equated socialism with being poor, the right to strike, the right not to work and still demand wages, etc. As I grew up I of course realised that I was wrong but I used to be still intrigued as to why most communist leaders used to oppose anything which would mean profits. Was Profit such a bad word? Did Karl Marx really say being rich was being bad? Why was making profits such a bad thing? Why was communism in my state equated with anti business? Why was it said that communism killed the work culture? And that is when I got to actually doing some fact finding myself about what Karl Marx actually said. What Marx actually said was that wealth of a company belonged to its workers and compensation depended on his value brought into the company. But tell me how can a company be wealthy if its workers are on strike. How can a company be wealthy if people do not work and consider a right to still be employed a birthright? Now Marx never said be lazy, did he? I once remember ages ago hearing an interview of a marxist labour union leader from West Bengal who said he had met a labour union leader in China. Apparently during his meeting it came out that his Chinese counterpart was agitating against the management cause of some treatment meted out to an employee. Of course the gentleman in question asked his Chinese friend why were they not going on a strike and I still remember what his Chinese counterpart had said “I am a labour union leader. If there is no labour being done then what am I a leader of? I will protest but stopping work is not the way of doing it.” Those words struck me even then and yet I saw my state lumbering its way through countless strikes and corporates moving away. Not one labour union leader realised that wealth cannot be distributed unless wealth is created. Some say Karl Marx’s theory is redundant in today’s world. But I feel its the most relevant in the world of today. If an employee’s pay is directly related to the welfare of the firm then both will be profitable. If every employee is a stake holder, then before going on strikes . If every employee is a stake holder then every employee will think twice before being lazy at work. If every employee’s benefit’s depended on the company’s welfare they would think a million times before they force a firm to accept an errant employee back as that errant employee would result in the company’s profit margin coming down. After all the end intention is to distribute wealth and unless its created it can never be distributed. And Karl Marx never said don’t be rich. Infosys is one of the greatest example of the above theory being a success. They created wealth and they distributed it among its employees. But you see nothing in this world came free. Hence each employee was made a stakeholder of that company. So if you want the wealth you have to work for it. The fruits of labour cannot come unless you have a stake in that business. I know many people will say this is simplifying the entire problem. Maybe it is. But its still better than the world where I came from where communism became synonym with strikes and laziness. And its certainly a start to ending the never ending enmity that capitalism and communism cannot co-exist. In today’s world the only way ahead is a synergy of both the thoughts. One needs to reinvent the wheel today if one has to survive and if communism has to survive in India, it has to befriend the corporate world and accept that making money is not all that bad.

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WHEN INTO THAT HEAVEN OF FREEDOM, WILL MY FATHER, MY COUNTRY AWAKE?

Today when YSR’s death loomed large over India, the one common comment I heard from a lot of people  is He was a good CM. He did make his money but he did a lot for people and it got me thinking, have we become so immune to corruption that we feel if politcians work for us we can forgive their corruption. Before I proceed further, I would like to make it clear that am not making any aspersion on Mr Reddy and do hope his soul rests in peace. But the fact remains that as common people we are immune to corruption?

There is a common saying in India, that you cannot be in politics if you are not corrupt. And yet every Indian blindly agrees that our PM who is the highest post holder of our democratic system (Presidency is not part of the elected system) is incorruptable. Dr Manmohan even after so many years in office holds the same esteem he held when he started his journey. So doesn’t that mean that if we want we can remain clean even in the most corrupt systems? Then why are so ready to accept corruption in our lives? Why can we not say no matter what good you have done, corruption will not be tolerated?

Corruption isn’t only about money. Corruption can be about power. Our erstwhile US President Mr George Bush was so corrupted that he felt his favourite pastime was to wage wars so that all can say how invincible America is. And so convinced were people that he could save them that many americans voted him back for a second time, forgiving his sins, even though most americans felt he was completely wrong in fighting war specially in Iraq. Thankfully they decided they will say no to his corruption of power and voted the democrats back to power this time and the basic underlying theory behind this presidential election was they said no to corruption – Corruption of power.

Corruption can also be a form of bigotry – something we see so prevalent in India. Yes Mr Modi, our chief minsiter from Gujerat has done a lot for his state and in spite of my sheer disrespect for him I will still accept that and admire it. But does that mean we forgive him for the sheer disrespect he shows to all muslims including justifying the riots? Is development enough to justify that corruption? And if not, then why are we not getting up and saying no matter what good you have done, you are corrupt and I will not vote for you.

And then of course there is corruption of money. Most politcians and bureaucrats in India has money beyond their reasonable means of income and yet we don’t question them. We don’t ask how a LK Advani has such wealth or how a Rahul Gandhi became richer in last 5 years with new shops? We don’t ask how come the police officers have bungalows which are way way beyond their any known source of income. We tolerate it and if they by chance do some good work, we say hey that’s ok. He at least did some good work, as if doing that good work was so unexpected of him. Actually doing any work for which he was getting salary was so unexpected of him.

And of course there is corruption of authority. Our every politician feels they are our Lord and Master. I saw a news the other day where the Rajasthan Govt actually passed an order saying one needs to pay our respect to every MP and MLA who they meet and their were definite guidelines as to what constituted respect. That too is corruption. In a country which is reeling under drought and all politicans find every reason to fight with each other for every reason under the sun, in Karnataka the one bill which got passed without even the slightest of fights was the Bill which increased every politcian’s income by 200% minimum. That too is corruption. For every time that the MPs and MLAs stage a walk out of the parliament and not work, they waste our (the tax payer’s money). That too is corruption. And yet we silently accept it as that is what we are used to.

When will a day come when we say no to corruption? When we get up and say NO MATTER WHAT GOOD YOU DO, I WILL NOT TOLERATE CORRUPTION? When will a day come when we say we wont give bribes, and let me see what you can do? When will a day come when we say we won’t tolerate corruption and will exercise our democratic powers to say no to such corrupt people who stand for elections? When will we realise that politicans and bureacrats doing their work well is nothing great but that is their job and the reason why we elected them and pay their salaries and does not justify corruption. When will the day come “WHEN INTO THAT HEAVEN OF FREEDOM, MY FATHER, WILL MY COUNTRY AWAKE?”

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