A few weeks back – I had an argument with my close friend. We were discussing the merits and de-merits of social welfare, and we are discussing the perils or advantages of giving away free TV by Government.
He was arguing FOR such social measures to bring up equality, etc. He was pretty romantic in saying that it is better to have inclusive growth, otherwise social unrest will result – like in case of Katradhu Thamizh or Maoists, etc.
Just 2 weeks later, his tax deduction report came about, and his employers denied him some deductions that he claimed, and his tax was increasing by 3-4000 dollars. He was all complaints and he was very upset.
I was very surprised – wouldn’t he think that that is a small contribution to the “inclusive growth”? Wouldn’t he indirectly fund 4 more poor families to get TV at their home? Shouldn’t he be happy that he was required to pay a trifle more tax?
Then it dawned on me – it was a revelation – He was talking about “other people” to be funding the “inclusive growth” not him, no, no, no. He was not rich enough. Others were richer, and they should be paying. Oh, that explains it!
All the people who are talking of these words – behave very differently when it comes to their own money and taxes, and NONE seem to be willingly giving away taxes for these programs.
It is some other “rich people” who should pay – I am not rich!
Believe me – he belongs in any economic study to the top 2% of Indian wealthy. But, according to him, only the top 0.5% should pay. I am sure people who belong to the top 5% think that only the top 2% should pay, and so on. Irrespective of where you belong, you want people richer than you to pay taxes, and not you!
Wow! What a concept, this “inclusive growth hypocites” have.
I believe that inclusive growth should come from education. I believe that inclusive growth should come from voluntary contributions. I feel immensely thankful for the society for where I am. I want to give it back. I have taken some voluntary “giving back” as part of that. And, I feel “giving back” will be with my time, and not necessarily money. And, I will decide what and when and to whom I want to give back. It is my choice – someone does not have a right in compelling me to give back. That is all there is to it. I have no questions about giving back – I have all questions about the compulsion vs volition.