Monday, March 03, 2014

Volta-Face

Vasu Reddy From Chicago
vasureddy@aol.com

As long as politics and politicians have been alive and in action about-face is a term that is synonymous with politicians and politics. There is absolutely nothing sacred in politics and how the life and times of politicians is defined. Very seldom history has had a politician that can be found who has stuck what was said and what was done (even a great Google search will not find an example of someone who never changed positions in politics). This definitely doesn't mean that leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and many great ones of the past and may be of the future are no exceptions to changing their mind about a position or policy. If the great men have changed their position on a specific issue, there must be a compelling reason to do so, and there must be a reason for the betterment of the society and/or a convincing enough reason to change positions.

But in today's politics, Volta-Face is just about as common as going to the bathroom or having a cup of coffee. Everyone and just about every issue gets supported and also gets rejected; depending on the time of the day, who is behind it and how much money is involved or any other reason for political and personal gain of the individual politician. Once elected and in office, nothing will prevent politicians from looking out for themselves. The love for power and the seat is greater than any loyalty to anyone or anything.

Volta-face is a total change of position, as in policy or opinion, was often referred to in the USA and UK for flip flopping on positions. For Indian politicians, this is a definition by birth. No one has to teach them to flip flop on positions for convenience, as it is in their DNA. It is self-interest that guides the politicians and nothing else and volta-face is natural for everyone involved in politics.

The INC is the party that was all alone when India was declared independent in 1947. May be some of the left wing parties had an inclination for their beliefs but INC was the sole inheritor to the independent India's political legacy in the post occupation period. We definitely have a history of great political activism through the history of greater India, prior to the occupation of the country for centuries by various invaders, but for the lack of continuity between the periods, after 1947 INC can be the sole inheritor to politics in India and rest of the parties have come to fruition as off-shoots of INC.

There is no exception in Indian politics or politicians; in staying true to the commitments to their constituents, India really has no individual or party exceptions on volta-face. 100% of the people who represent the country at some point of time have taken action that are in their own best interest and have volta-face on people who elected them.

The latest example of politicians planning and executing to self-interest is the example of INC pushing through the creation of two states from Andhra Pradesh. The reasons for separation of the telugu people are far too many to list and too many decades of politicking and manuvering to really track what is fact and what is fiction. The creation of the two states, and the conditions under which they have been rammed through is also an endless list of volta-face events. The kicker for 2014 will be congress believing that TRS will merge into INC and will give them a sweep in the newly formed state is just a myth at best. First; TRS will soon announce its decision to choose it's own partners in the next elections and will not be merged into INC or any other party. If they merge into INC the guys who yelled the loudest to create separation of the state simply would disappear and will never be heard in the future, and will be relegated to the history books. These guys are so used to being in the lime light they will never simply walk away with the glory of division and they will remain in the limelight as long as they live.

The original premise of establishing TRS was to the cause (fight for is the commonly used metaphor, which is kind of overstating it as no one fights for a separate state) of separation of AP into two states, and once the state was split TRS will cease to exist as an organization and as a party. TRS is a political party and it is natural for it to volta-face; on both issues;
  1. Disband the organization once the state of AP is divided into Telangana and AP.

  1. Merge with INC if the state of Telangana is granted under INC leadership.
It is only natural for a political party to make statements and promises, and simply volta-face on them. TRS will do the same on both the promises that it made to people when they were forming the party, and also to INC before the seperation of AP was pushed through. If they don't chnage their minds on both the issues TRS would begin the era of new political organization, and this is not going to happen.

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