Sunday, February 26, 2017

INDIAN

vasureddy@aol.com
Vasu Reddy from Chicago

The whole of North America was the native land of the Indians.  Centuries of migrants still continue to embark on a journey’s sometimes simple and sometimes arduous to migrate to the Americas, and now all of a sudden the land of the Indians has become someone else’s claim to be theirs.

Killing of a young Indian man in a public place this last week was really shameful and deplorable.  Any idiot with a gun and any idiot who is a bigot can shoot, but shooting someone who is as much an American as anyone else who claims to be American is only because the shooter is an idiot and who is really doesn't know what an American is.  He is and will use race as a way to attack anyone else who doesn't look like him.

I am sad and I am angry.  I am not confused.  I really think these idiots need to understand and appreciate what America is and who it belongs to.  It certainly doesn’t belong to any one color of people.

Let me ask as many questions as I can to see if anyone has a problem with being Indian?


  • Your doctor, nurse, caregiver, and someone who watches your heart beat, health, children and elderly is Indian

  • Your smiling pharmacist, who fills your prescription and wishes you good health is Indian

  • Your real estate agent, looking to find you a home of your dreams, and also sell your home for you to find a new one, and trying to find you the best value if Indian

  • Your insurance agent who is always trying to find you the lowest cost and highest value for you home, health, car, business, travel or any other coverage is Indian

  • Your ever smiling investment banker, always finding you multiple options for your long term security, and the future of your children is Indian

  • Your gas station attendant who is always offering to help you, and always wishing you luck with your lotto is Indian

  • Your drive thru banker, ever smiling and being helpful and always asking you if need anything else is Indian

  • Your software development team and their backbone support teams are Indian

  • Your IT infrastructure and your Internet backbone is managed by Indian

  • Your Google is run by Indian

  • Your Microsoft is run by Indian

  • Your Pepsi is run by Indian

  • Your most affluent homes are Indian

  • Your most giving community is Indian

  • Your most respectful and quietest communities are Indian

  • Your most peaceful and most revered temples are Indian

  • Your brightest and best students are Indian

  • Your best international relationships are honored by Indian

  • Your best neighbor and your best friend is Indian

  • Your everyday has some positive and progressive contribution by Indian
I can go on to type hundreds of lines of what Indian does and how Indian adds to your life.  Why shoot an innocent and humble Indian citizen?

If all this is Indian then why any Indian is not a native American?

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Race

Vasu Reddy from Chicago
vasureddy@aol.com

We are never sure of how the race as people refer to came into existence.  My experience is mainly with the two largest democracies, India my nation of birth and the USA the nation that adopted me.

Small Town India I still believe lives in relative peace and harmony.  Only when the politics become hot, the race relations get stirred up.  Men and women typically get race biased with politics and international interference.  Whenever Pakistan sends militants into India, the whole country gets its race and religion card up quickly, but otherwise they live in peace and quiet.  India with its huge population and wide open boarders, does get affected often with terror, but does live in religious harmony.  But internal to the country and in its politics race is a huge factor.  Politicians constantly whip-up the caste feelings, and people keep following the politics of caste.

The United States divides the race by color; Black, White, Hispanic, Asian and so on by mostly color of skin and where people are from.  The USA really is the most segregated society for a nation that is only a few hundred years with people who are not really native.  But here also the politics and race relations go hand in hand.

For centuries where there are societies race as a part of society has been a normal phenomenon.  The Indian race structure was typically based on type of work the groups of people did; Farmers, Teachers, Traders, Fighters, and so on and the nation is pretty much divided into the families involved in various parts of the economic and social structure of the nation.  Although we have evolved into manufacturing and information technology, the names and families continue to rely on the traditions of their names and what they did.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with family and its traditional history and its name.

The USA primarily is divided with color of people, and then their ancestry.  As India is divided with people’s race, USA is with its people’s color.  Both societies as democracies have allowed for a choice few to become all powerful in business and wealth.

Each of the democracies allow for free enterprise (hopefully) and thus allowing the enterprise also to create massive wealth with a few.

If we just focus on what is happening in the last few years in both USA and India, we certainly see the continued and forceful display of race as the primary factor in electing nations leaders.  It is the easiest card to play in election, is whip up the race factor.  No matter what we are and what we do, when it comes to elections we will vote with our kind; typically.  The national divide is fairly open and apparent.  There is no denying that race will always be bait for politics.

As the internet and television allows for immediate access to global news, we have exposure to the coverage from everywhere.  It is first and foremost, the news as presented and sometimes as seen.  We don’t even have to involve religion into race relations as simply race itself can divide us, in racial lines.  If you add religion to this already charged race relations, we will end up with what is happening in ME and parts of Asia.

We are given our names and appearance.  There is nothing we should be worrying about our race.  As the globe explodes with more and more people, and the distance becomes nominal, race probably should not be a factor in our choices.  Our choices should be based on our needs and our family needs.

In India it works for the politicians.  It also works in some industries to use the caste card.  The huge emphasis of caste in movie business in India, especially south India is obvious.  But the movie-goers primarily pay for entertainment, but the makers remain in the caste hole.  Politicians constantly use race and caste as vote banks, and people blindly accept it.  There is a pressure for development and positive change, but the sheer magnitude of people and their needs are greater than the resources and politicians and their ability is largely limited by resources, and internal strife.

The United States has greater challenges with internal issues of race and debt, and a huge external demand for resources and terror.  Perhaps a radical approach to America First might work in the short run, but will limit the global markets for American business.  Terror no longer has a face, and until the financial institutions join hands to eliminate terror funding, it is impractical.  The USA might be best served in a global financial shut down of terror, and cut off as much waste as it can to become debt free and perhaps terror free.

Race will continue to find a place in politics and society.  It is perhaps the simplest emotion, and combining with religion makes it a potent cocktail of emotions.  There is probably no immediate solution to solving race relations, rather stop race baiting.  Once again it works for politicians in democracies, so we probably will not see any change in using race as a potent political weapon.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Marginal Acceptance

Vasu Reddy from Chicago

All you need is 50.01% of the electoral vote to be put in power.  Democratic societies typically need only a simple majority in most circumstances to put someone in power.  The simple majority is what puts one in power over 100% of the people.  Most democracies work thru varied structures of voting to elect the leader based on majorities in localized electoral process, where a majority as defined in each of these circumstances elects a leader.

In the large democracies such as the USA and India, the local leaders (typically representing a party that is contesting the elections) are elected and they in turn project a national leader of their party, who when his party obtains a majority in turn becomes the leader of the nation.

In the USA, the Electoral College elects the president, simply representing the states choosing their electoral college, which elects the national leader.  For each state there are a certain number of electoral votes, and majority of voters in each state determine the electoral votes.  The majority of the electoral votes choose the leader.  Sometimes the majority of the electorate doesn’t represent the majority of the national vote.  As it happened in the USA with 2016, and the election of Trump, although the national vote count was about 3.0 Million less than his opponent.  Something similar happened between Bush and Gore in 2000.

As of now the USA presidential elections are framed in such a way the Electoral College picks the president.  Trump in 2016 as was Bush in 2000 both elected as president in the frame of the constitutionally mandated process.  Bush went on to be elected again, and Trump is just a couple of weeks into his first term.  Marginal acceptance is irrelevant to the presidential election, number of real votes don’t count, only the Electoral College prevails.

A normal election focuses on majority of the votes.  The state and local elections are only on the basis of the majority of the vote, even if it is by a single vote.  Only the national election is based on the Electoral College.

Almost 3 million more people voted for Clinton than for Trump on 2016, but it really did not matter.  If we relegate 2000 and 2016 on learning about the democracy and it’s functioning, both Al Gore and Hillary Clinton will take their real voter majorities to their memoirs.

The power of the slimmest margin is still the most powerful position for politicians and democracies.  Weather we like it or not, that faction will determine the likes and dislikes, of the general population.  While we appreciate the process of democracies (when free and clear of any stress to the population) the process also pits likes and dislikes, and who you choose typically is representing only half of you (the whole population). So, marginal acceptance is not overrated, it really is very much underrated.

We will all not get what we voted for, and almost half of us get what we voted against, and in 2016, USA had more than a half plus and a great deal more of the voters, have to live for at least thru 2000 with this.

The Holy Grail for human beings is the process of democracy.  Choosing a path to live in a democracy is fluid, and people again with a simplest majority can decide on what their chosen options are.

Trump or anyone after him (or before him), are in the office because of the process itself.  The brouhaha about legitimacy of the election is really a matter of what the democracy created, and not an anomaly.  As long as we choose to be free in our thought process, democracies will function and also self-correct.  It is always better to be free and make a choice, it will allow us to vote for change, just as and when we need.

Monday, February 06, 2017

The Art of Imbalance

Vasu Reddy from Chicago
vasureddy@aol.com

In his first couple of weeks as president, Trump has started to keep his election promises in the executive power category.  Weather you like it or not, he is acting on some of the most popular and eloquent issues which brought him to the white house.  Be it general public, the US congress, any other heads of state, or even the global audience, it doesn’t deter Trump from issuing executive orders on his signature political issues; Mexico Wall, Trade and immigration.

While I have turned my television off from watching any news and deliberately avoiding anyone that is representing Trump.  People promoting the policies that have become the rallying cry for Trump in the 2016 election have continued to do the same.  The nation is divided on what next with each of them, and Trump is simply acting on what he said he would.

Ignoring the trade imbalances for decades has put USA at a disadvantage in competing with a global market place.  Although we still have the best markets, best resources, best people, best of everything, the ever growing budget deficit continues to plague the nation, and has already began to threaten the nations ability to manage its finances.  Decades of negotiated and deliberated economic and political affiliations will be difficult to throw out of the window, unless you are Trump.  Trump can simply trash every trade and defense agreement out, and ask each nation to renegotiate, and ask for a fair share of the cost to the benefit that each nation receives from the USA.  While this certainly puts USA first, doesn’t necessarily mean that the trade and cost issues will go away.  We certainly don’t know what will happen if the USA becomes a closed economic, political and military market, and what if each nation would like to do the same.

USA could certainly become a closed society and block out all imports, or simply buy and sell on 100% reciprocity basis.  The USA certainly has the natural resources and geographic advantage for being a closed economy, but it is a nation of immigrants and disassociating with the rest of world is a matter of ignoring the combined value of people and processes, that make USA the great nation that it is.

Certainly we can be a closed economy that strictly do business on an equal import/export basis with every nation.  The nation will survive in the short run, and perhaps will thrive in the long run, by structuring within its limitations and resources.  These imitations will impede global attractiveness, growth and innovation.  The country perhaps needs a plan of negotiated trade practice as Trump suggests in eliminating the trade imbalances and eventually budget deficits.  The book building and budget balancing is certainly difficult if the USA continues to play the big bother to the world and even countries that can afford their own national security doesn’t pony up their fair share.

Trade imbalances in 2014, the five major trading partners account for almost all of the trade imbalances.

Country
Exports $B
Imports $B
Difference
Canada
 $      241.00
 $       331.00
 $        (90.00)
Mexico
 $      194.00
 $       291.00
 $        (97.00)
China
 $      134.00
 $       432.00
 $      (298.00)
Japan
 $        67.50
 $       128.00
 $        (60.50)
Germany
 $        61.60
 $       121.00
 $        (59.40)
Total
 $      698.10
 $    1,303.00
 $      (604.90)

In 2014 USA imported $2.19 trillion and exported $1.45 Trillion, with an overall trade deficit of $731.0 billion.  This doesn’t necessarily mean it adds to the US debt but, certainly an opportunity for revenue generation and additional employment derived from the imbalance.  Oil is a major part of the imports and machinery and transport related areas cover the second most imported products into the USA.

The USA generated approximately $3.0 Trillion revenues in 2014 and the country added additional $500 Billion in national debt.  So, assuming the country is adding 1/6 of the national revenue as additional national debt, there is a massive catch-up or reduction in expenditures is required to simply balance the budget.  Only god knows what has to be done to reduce the $20 plus trillion in already piled up debt.

Neither Republicans nor Democrats have had the guts to balance the budgets, nor take steps in the direction to reduce and eventually eliminate the debt.  Trump has said he will wipe the national debt in ten years, which is an ambitious statement to begin with.  His politics are now becoming policies of the USA, and if the last two weeks is any indication, Republicans have no intention of changing for the better.

Trump himself might want to question his own politics on why build a wall just with Mexico?  Why not with Canada also? It is very simple anyone can fly into or take a boat to Canada and simply walk over from there into the USA.  Border protection doesn’t mean you simply impose on the weaker economy than yours; it must cover every corner of the nation.

Why ban only a few nations from travel to the USA?  Why not every nation that has some sort of links to terror, and not just single out nations where Trump doesn’t have any personal business interest?  If the USA wants to take an attitude about trade or immigration, then why not with every nation on earth?  Why change statements on what the policies are, rather just make them a global issue on trade, politics, immigration, terror and fair sharing of costs.  If you just talk tough to a couple of soft targets, it will not achieve the intent of a nation first objective.  If USA wants to get tough, then globalize it.

A Child of India

Vasu Reddy from Chicago vasureddy@aol.com Howsoever I look at myself I am a child of India.   My mother and my mother country remain wha...