Monday, May 22, 2006

Bribe the People

As I fret about the pervasiveness of populism, be it in the capitalist model-state of the United States, or in the still-ambivalent New World, including my own India, I came across this quotation from Alexis de Tocqueville that struck a chord:
The American Republic will endure, until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money.

Bribe the people indeed! In my home state of Tamil Nadu in India, the DMK party won the recent state elections by promising subsidized rice, a free television for every family and a variety of such pork that would make a conservative shudder. No one ever asked why the party was unwilling instead to commit to provide a robust economy that would alleviate the need for subsidized rice or free TVs.

Here in the US, as our governments rack up record deficits from being unable to cut out our spending sprees, we would do well to remember those words.

2 comments:

Brijesh said...

Every election politicians give so many promises and break them once in power. I feel the common man is a fool who believes these offers and vote for political parties

Balachandar.K said...

u pple r ight....
it is not the fault of the politicians..it is the fault of us....
we want to enjoy everything free withouht working....
ifthe attitude ofour people is like this then we will b treated as beggars only by these idiots...