India That Is Bharat
Has he gone bananas? Has Robert Vadra-Gandhi, husband of Priyanka Gandhi-Vadra, gone bananas? Or is it a case of going bonkers? Or is Satiricus being simply crazy to ask such a mad question? Satiricus does not know. He only knows that the other day Vadra called Kejriwal & Co. “mango people (‘aam’ aadmi) in banana republic” on his Facebook page. But why should that raise so many heady headlines? Personally Satiricus is himself a mango man, an aam aadmi, for he prefers an aam to a banana. But does that make him a fruitcake?
On the other hand should Vadra have said in so many words that Mom-in-law is ruling over a banana republic? Satiricus thinks not. In fact Satiricus is sure not. For according to the dons of the dictionary a banana republic is a country that lives off other countries’ money. But if India were that poor, would Soniaji have so generously gifted billions of dollars to virtually bankrupt Europe not long ago? True, for starters it was just a petty sum of two billion dollars that her nominated and nominal prime minister had committed to the International Monetary Fund. But a couple of months back it was reported that this unseemly pettiness was more than made up by a cash transfer of 10 billion dollars to Europe. And now a little birdie tells bird-brained Yours Truly that despite the Euro being in a ‘terminal state’, as an obnoxious analyst put it, IMF will soon be gifted a further tranche of 10 more billion dollars. From where come these “huge dollops of cash”, to give another crass quote of this cussed columnist? Of course it’s Indian money—although it’s in Swiss banks. By the way, how come despite delicious dollops of dollars half the Indian population goes to bed every night on a hungry stomach, as a wretched report recently revealed? Well, that is not so difficult to understand. It is because an Indian stomach does not find dollars digestible. For that you need a European stomach with a Swiss hunger and Italian digestion.
15: The Magic Figure
Is there something magical about the number 15? The way it keeps cropping up, Satiricus has begun to wonder. “15 minutes of fame” is, of course, old hat. The other day a columnist came up with something new – a column titled “15 minutes of shame”. Satiricus found that it was all about Bollywood actresses’ way to fifteen crores by exposing their bodies for 15 years without shame. Then there was that esteemed estimate of Justice Katju that after 15 years all corruption in India will automatically go away. And now we have the brand new political leader Kejriwal assuring us non-political nitwits that his party will change the system in 15 days on being “voted to power”.
Well, now, Satiricus is naturally happy to know that, and he will certainly vote for Kejriwal’s party – if the price is right. But is it really possible? If he means the present corrupt political system, can he change it? Of course he can, as stupid Satiricus could have understood right away had he not been so stupid. For this new political leader has promised to change the old system – he has not promised to do away with it. After he comes to power with votes bought at the prevailing market price he can be relied upon to keep his promise – to change the old system with a new system. And that, says Satiricus, should be welcome for two very reasonable reasons. One: Variety is the spice of life. Two: In politics, the more things change, the more they remain the same.
When people complain that the world is going to the dogs Satiricus tells them that the world would be a better place if it went to the dogs. But he was frankly not sure how many dogs it would take to do that. So why not start with just one dog? The other day Satiricus read in the papers that in a certain tiny town in the US of A the police chief recently resigned, as a result of which the only remaining member of the town’s police force was the police dog. Actually that may not be bad for that town. Rather, things could improve all round. For instance, employment opportunities could improve with the setting up of a dog biscuit factory, scientific research could be promoted with a research lab for making succulent synthetic bones to chew, and there could be a watchdog committee to control crime by humans. All in all, the townsfolk could find life so good that there would be no bitching about things.