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I will not associate with Shashi Tharoor until he renounces Congress and apologises to the country

One of my friends met Shash Tharoor recently and discussed my work. Apparently Tharoor has read my work and holds it in some esteem but thinks that I am “a right man in the wrong place”. I don’t know what he means by that. Is he in the right place?

I’m extracting below some of my comments during the follow up Whatsapp conversation I had with this friend:

SBP will *never* join hands with contaminated people like Shashi. He is a beggar at the petticoat of Sonia Gandhi and her fool son. We will succeed from the bottom up. We are already staring to get an excellent response in Bhadohi at the grassroots. No real political movement ever started except from the grassroots – through grassroots leadership.

Ignore “intellectuals” and elites. They are either super-arrogant or bootlickers like Shashi Tharoor. Except Gurcharan Das, not one of them is worthy of any respect.

You know me very well – why would we even remotely want to associate with contaminated people? We will create new leaders. And if India doesn’t have talent then India will continue to suffer, but these old rags from socialist parties are not going to be part of our journey. We stand alone, completely away from existing corrupted parties and leaders.

My comment to Nandan Nilekani made personally to him when he came to Melbourne says it all: I told him before the 2014 elections not to join corrupt Congress. I told him Congress is ultra corrupt. His wife Rohini was with him when I said that. I don’t mince words.

Anyone who remains with corrupt Congress is a traitor to the country. You know I said that publicly on the stage in Patanjali.

These people are self-serving traitors. They will join with anyone who feeds them [Sanjeev: and we are talking being “fed” with seriously corrupt black money]. I want people who will stand alone and fight for the truth and liberty. My method is more time consuming but it is the only way to bring real change. I bring no baggage. And everyone knows that I bring total integrity. We need leaders who have no baggage and whose integrity can be trusted.

You know I’m ruthless with anyone who deviates. A lot of people have fallen by the wayside.

I’d still be willing to associate with people who are otherwise clean and honest, but these people need to demonstrate that they have good character. Character above everything. That’s why I agree with the lone approach of Swami Om Poorna Swatantra. He never gave in to greed. I respect that.

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FINALLY, let me say that I would be willing to talk to Shashi Tharoor if he IMMEDIATELY RESIGNS from Congress and apologises for the harm he has caused India by not treading the straight path. He could have joined me 20 years ago. I have been working on the liberal party project for India for 20 years. If people like him had joined me 20 years ago, we would have had a liberal party ruling India today, and India would be well on the way to total transformation.

But these people will NEVER do that. Tharoor is a coward.

I have never written to him in the past but I will send this comment to him.

JOIN ME TO CHANGE INDIA. There is no other way to change India.

I WILL NEVER JOIN OR SUPPORT THE CORRUPT PARTIES.

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A reputational platform: a market-based alternative to occupational licensing

Occupational licensing (OL) is one of the worst ways to deal with alleged problems of information asymmetry (essentially problems about trustworthiness including trustworthy delivery of a product of agreed quality and in a timely manner). There is a good amount of literature on this issue.

However, we need to explore whether market based solutions exist, to alleviate this problem.

I am thinking of a voluntary reputational platform that will deal with information asymmetry issues and ultimately eliminate the need for occupational licensing. [See my FB post here.]

To be durable and credible, the government should build such a generic platform covering all licensed occupations. The government would need to ensure that only genuine consumers are able to provide feedback on individual professionals (say, doctors or builders). The professionals being rated would be in a position to read the names of the reviewers while the public would only see the review, not the reviewer’s name. The professionals being rated would also have the right to provide their own view on any adverse situation reported by a customer. It is important that the professionals relinquish any recourse to defamation laws against consumers who provide honest feedback, as part of entering this platform.

Such a platform being voluntary would ensure that only good professionals step forward to be rated. Customers will, of course, not provide custom to anyone who is not willing to get himself/herself fated. Those who agree to be rated would also have an incentive to provide excellent quality of service to ensure continued high ratings. This would improve the quality of services provided by the professionals. The last period problem would remain but it is likely to be relatively small, and other mechanisms could be designed to deal with it.

Such a platform can initially run in parallel with existing schemes and over time, after it is evaluated, it could allow the scrapping of such schemes.

In 2011, Poland decided to liberalise access to 250 of the 380 currently regulated professions. Need to find out more about this bold experiment.

Overall, I think it is high time to think of a new models that support the market instead of requiring major government involvement – which merely increases inefficiency and makes things worse.

Have you thought in detail about any such reputational platform? Happy to receive any inputs.

Here’s a generic framework to look at this issue:

ADDENDUM

My FB post here.

Why do we need to license GPs? They are harmless creatures. The worst they can do is to misdiagnose – in which case one has to go to the specialist in any case.

Even most specialists can do no serious harm. So only those with the most potential for harm (mainly surgeons) need to be under the scrutiny of government. Even that can be minimised through a voluntary reputational platform.

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Sorry, S. Gurumurthy, you are totally wrong on almost everything

Someone shared this video of Gurumurthy’s talk on demonetisation in September 2017 in Chennai and asked for my views:

First of all, the talk is too long and rambling, so I looked to the internet for summaries. This written article provides good context about this man and his speech. Thereafter, I scrolled the above youtube audio to get a sense of what he is saying.

The problem with Gurumurthy is the same as the problem with Arthakranti people: they don’t know the real causes of black money and economic development but try to use financial tools to deal with fundamental incentive issues.

Gurumurthy also talks about the need for an Indian economics. That is a load of rubbish.

It is very unfortunate that people like him are influential enough in India to be given a platform to speak + also well connected to key decision makers.

We have good economists like Deepak Lal and Nirvikar Singh but they all fled India. No one wants to listen to genuine economist in India. [Of course those who follow my blog know that some time ago I discounted Deepak Lal after he bent over backwards to praise Modi! What idiocy – that showed he doesn’t understand the basics of liberty or good governance. ]

Let me add what I’ve been saying for 20 years: we need fundamental reforms of both the governance and policy systems in India. We need to get the incentives right – these are all very badly skewed and will invariably lead to bad outcomes.

Gurumurthy might benefit (although I suspect he is not the kind of man who will seek a new education at his age) from reading BFN.

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The nature and extent of the coronal mass ejection policy problem and what can be done about it

This follows on from here. Do read that page for introductory info.

This post is for my analysis. It will be constantly updated. Bookmark it and come back in a week.

Is this a big deal?

Yes.

“In 2015, Peter Pry, executive director of the Electromagnetic Pulse Task Force on National Homeland Security, testified before Congress that prolonged damage to the grid could kill 90 percent of Americans, “through starvation, disease, and societal collapse.” [Source]

What is the chance of this happening?

The UK Government has estimated the chance of a Carrington level CME at 1 per cent per year. Some scientific studies have estimated at 12 per cent per decade (around 2 per cent per year). A documentary on the subject estimates that such an event occurs around once in 150 years. Somewhere I had read these things can occur around once in 500 years.

What is the best way to protect against it?

“The best way to protect against solar storms is to forecast them in advance and shut down the grid before it’s struck.”

But currently we won’t get sufficient notice

“While astronomers can see solar events, such as a coronal mass ejection, they don’t have a true picture of its magnitude until it’s about 90 minutes from Earth.”

What can be done to harden the power grid in advance?

“Power companies have made a few moves to protect against electromagnetic interference. Some grid operators and transmission infrastructure owners are putting in place so-called Faraday enclosures, shields of conductive material used to protect electronic equipment and facilities. Utilities have also started stockpiling spare parts to replace any that are damaged by an EMP event, storms or other disasters.” [Source]

“utility companies have implemented a number of protections to secure the grid, such as installing shielding on some substations that house the digital infrastructure that supports equipment controls as well as some operations centers.” [Source]

What is the cost of full protection?

In relation to an EMP (which is similar in many ways to a CME impact):

Richard Mroz, president of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, warned the cost of preventing widespread failures from an EMP would “be astronomical.” Placing transformers or a substations in shielded cages would cost hundreds of millions of dollars, he said, while protecting critical assets on a distribution system like New Jersey’s could reach into the billions of dollars.

“Managing that kind of threat right now-no one really has the resources to do that,” Mroz said. [Source]

On the other hand: 

“Boland said that in her state and others, utility companies makes it sound as though installing grid-protection devices would be exorbitantly costly. She argues that the technology isn’t expensive, and that placing blocking systems on major transformers in Maine would cost each household only about $1.50 a year or less over four to five years.” [Source]

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