OH THE SYSTEM! 30/11/2010

The fault lies with “our” system, accused my friend amidst a heated discussion we were having about corruption having become a way of life.

It’s a pity we are not able to do anything about cleansing the system, I said.

What do you mean by not being able to do anything, we can do something if we are determined because it is all in “our hands”, he said.

You make it sound very simple. Where do we begin and how do we proceed? I said looking expectantly at him.

We can begin with “ourselves” for instance, he suggested.

You mean to say we are corrupt and we should put a stop to it? I asked quite shocked at what he said.

Y E and S, he spelt out the word for an answer.

I don’t understand, why don’t you be more explicit, I said.

How old are you? he suddenly shot the question. 

What has my age got to do with corruption, I asked thinking he must be off

 his mind.

Everything. Tell me your age, he insisted.

I told him.

Is it your true age? he asked.

Well, you don’t expect a woman to tell her true age, do you? I said with a sense of guilt. 

See, this is the starting point of corruption – lies, lies and more lies, he accused.

Age is something very personal and you don’t go around showing your birth certificate unless you are applying for a job, I said in defence.

Are you fond of sweets?

Though I wondered why he was asking me, I said I do have a sweet tooth.

And your doctor would have told you to keep a check on your weight and cut down on sweets, he said, scrutinising me from top to bottom.

Well, I parried.

Now do you understand when I say that “we can begin with ourselves”. 

First we should begin to cleanse our system by changing our lifestyle and then go on to cleanse other systems – be they bureaucratic or political, he said. 

When shall we begin? I asked him staring at his D shape.

Why don’t “you” begin first, I shall “try ” to follow suit, he advised.

N Meera Raghavendra Rao

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4 thoughts on “OH THE SYSTEM! 30/11/2010

  1. Professor V.Raghavan

    Very amusing! Like the saying that charity begins at home, the “system” starts with one’s own system!

    Talking about corruption is a national pastime for us. This should be listed among the national symbols like national bird (peacock) and national animal (tiger)!

    1. Each country has only one national bird and one national animal which are exclusive to their own country but corruption I ‘m afraid is a world wide phenomenon like global warming.We are in great company.

  2. Prof.V.N.K.Kumar

    I assume the “he” in this skit is your husband and the “D” shape is a side view of his pot-belly ! “Doctor, first heal thyself”.

    “Everybody other than me is corrupt. As for myself, I am only planning for the future security of my family members. So many people are dependent on me and I will be failing in my duties if I don’t accumulate a nest egg while I am in power”, says the corrupt minister/bureaucrat.

    People make decisions with their gut and then use their brains to rationalize those decisions.

    Why do corrupt people talk about corruption ? To assure themselves that they are in good company. Sometimes to express their subconscious admiration for the modus operandi of the scam. But mostly because they have some time to kill and talking about the newspaper headlines screaming about the latest scam is not as taxing as understanding rocket science.

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