India currently is considered a mixed economy but after independence adopted the socialist path. The Constitution of the country still considers the country to be Socialist. The major responsibilities are assigned to the government and it is considered the role of government to provide employment, allocate resources and take many other major decisions. The reader might think about the freedom of citizens then it is assured by giving them voting power to elect their leaders. This logic is what has been running this country. After years of independence, the country is at a very slow developing rate and hasn’t reached where it was expected.
The voting system isn’t just Democracy and not every problem can be solved with voting. Public opinion visibly has been based on ignorance and propaganda always and the voting system leads to the majority dominating the minority every time despite the fact that the minority might be correct and not the major portion of the voting population. Voting for a leader and letting him/her control every part of life isn’t assuring liberty but just giving a little say to people to elect a new dictator after every tenure.
In India, politicians live luxurious life with great security and in people’s awareness are also known for funding gangsters and aiding cronies. This is a harsh truth that nobody wants to voice but very well knows about it. But why? Because there is a common belief that in this mixed economy there would be some saint that would be elected who will do the job with the best intentions. Indians believe the problem lies in the motive and morality of leaders, though it is definitely true but isn’t the only case and the problem wouldn’t be solved after eradicating this issue.
A very old argument against collectivism is the incentive problem which says that people won’t have the incentive to do much if they are all paid equally. This argument has always been ignored by many collectivists but others advocated collective planning which was then debunked by Austrian Economist Ludwig von Mises.
The real problem is not the players in the system of this country but the system itself as it expects the impossible. There are many things happening in society and politicians cannot fulfill the needs and demands of all by taking the charge. Politicians lack knowledge about the workings of the economy not because of their lack of education but because it’s just impossible for anyone to have knowledge about everything. A man working in a factory and a man working in the IT sector have different knowledge and a politician wouldn’t have knowledge of both. Experts or Bureaucrats will be facing the same problem.
James M Buchanan the founder of Public Choice Theory in Economics hypothesized that in a collective system the leaders have self-interests that influence their decisions. Politicians and Bureaucrats are just like any other human beings who have their self-interest. One might notice why the policies by the state are mostly short-run-sighted.
The leaders of the country are undoubtedly not doing a great or even a decent job and seeing the way other countries have been doing makes the case worse. All it is left now is to compare the economy to Pakistan and compare the GDP of a billion-populated country to the likes of the UK and France. Nationalism is so toxic that it forces people to accept cronyism and protectionism and with that live in denial about the country’s shortcomings. The conservatives unlike the west in India are those from the left who can’t imagine a world without the government being involved in the economy. This mentality lies amongst the intellectuals and experts and many of them are bureaucrats who work for the government. This mentality is spread to all. Even though it is being taught that leaders aren’t doing as much as they should, it is never taught that it is impossible for them to bring results that are being expected or even out of expectations.
At the moment, what seems to protect the country is entrepreneurship which is possible in the consumer sovereign market and India is quite far from it. Government agencies for consumers won’t be helpful for consumer sovereignty but can rather be crucial in its existence of it. Liberalization that saved the country in 1991 is needed to a higher degree.
Government is capable of doing very few tasks. Instead of saying that politicians aren’t moral, the first task is to build a system with practical and sensible tasks for them and after that, the discussion can be carried forward on which party is doing the job properly. The process is quite the opposite in India and the majority have the belief that the government is assigned tasks that aren’t for them but for the individuals. The concept of both majorities being right and few people making plans have their fallacies that lead to the question of what is the solution?! The solution whatever it be should definitely keep factors like allocation of resources, freedom of individuals, prosperity of society, and development of human resources in mind.