7 April 2016

Using Fire To Treat Burns

We regulate the cost of auto rides because that is a public service. It cannot be 'exorbitant', and the auto driver cannot use the advantages of 'information arbitrage' to charge 'free market' rates... We fix how much the driver can earn in a day, based on the social norm for what is a 'fair daily wage' for that work. This is justified in the interest of the Greater Good of society, since transportation is considered a public service, even if provided by private people. The same logic doesn't apply for education or health care or housing... Here we depend on capital and bow down to the norms set by capital for profit returns on their investment which decides who get access to these services and who doesn't and at what cost. That these services are also public services, and need to be affordable on par with auto rides is too much for our imagination.

Next is the idea of private profits and tax evasion. Most global corporations use the resources, people and infrastructure of developing countries, to create profits which are parked in tax havens (for reference, the top two sources of FDI into India are Mauritius and Singapore, and it's not even close beyond that)... They pay next to nothing in taxes in the host country (ironically America is also complaining about this), circumventing the spirit of taxation and it's role in human welfare.

These profits are pumped back into philanthropy, to feel good about themselves, earn a 'good name' and fame for 'benevolence'. The real problem is the idea of using capital and profit driven means to solve problems created by capital and profit driven means. 

The assumption that innovation is driven mainly by profit motive is a lie. It has no basis in truth. People invented and discovered far greater things than computers and drugs, long before ideas of capital even existed. For instance, we invented writing. People are creative because we are humans, we find solutions for things because we have minds and souls, not because we were born to crave for profits. So stop peddling lies in the name of private profits being the driver of all of human progress (money has a role in society, just not the current exaggerated version). If anything, the singular pursuit of profits is the root cause of a lot of problems, like poor health care addressed in the article below.

http://thewire.in/2016/03/23/the-gates-foundation-and-the-anatomy-of-philanthrocapitalism-25579/

14 comments:

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