Wednesday, August 22, 2012

#9 : The Political Verdict

The heading might be a bit deceptive. No! This post is surely not about some corrupt politician or our ever lacking civic amenities ( Can't stop ranting about our system can I!???).
Last month I got a chance to catch up with a long lost friend from the NGO that I work for. I asked him what he was up to. I probably have never heard such a reply ( My jaws just dropped to the floor!) He replied that he aspires to become a politician and has finished a course in political sciences which included inspiring talking from well established politicians! Imagine that reply from a software engineer. That is the last thing that we would expect. I wonder why this change of heart. From being a software engineer to a politician!Is the software sector so hopeless that he has taken such a decision!?! Then when I prod him with further questions and he says its what he always wanted to become - A Politician. His reply left me shell shocked!

It took me almost a month to pen my thoughts! I have taught 2 batches of 9th std kids and currently handling the third set. The first question I ask when we start classes is what profession they want to choose. I have seen variety of replies from carpenter to aeronautical engineer, Army men to painter etc. But no kid has ever said politician for an answer. I wonder why?! Gen Y doesn't even consider politics as a career or what?!

But then realization hits me hard when I do some research. I just did a quick research to find out what exactly does it take to be a politician and this is what I learnt.

First who is a politician?

This is what I get upon Googling 

  • A person who is professionally involved in politics, esp. as a holder of or a candidate for an elected office
  • A person who acts in a manipulative and devious way, typically to gain advancement within an organization
  • A schemer who tries to gain advantage in an organization in sly or underhanded ways
  • A person primarily interested in political office for selfish or other narrow usually short-sighted reasons    

  • The first definition seems the "Textbook"definition while the other 3 seems to be "Reality"definition.

    Now that we have established who a politician is lets get to ways of "becoming" one.

    WAY 1 : Get a degree in political sciences. (This way is highly "Not Recomended "by me! If you still really want to take this route to become a politician read this article Might help you get perspective or even lose it !) 
    PROs : You have a degree. You can understand the working of our system ( Not that we don't understand it otherwise!) 
    1. Your chances of getting kicked out of your home by your parents increases exponentially. Especially if your family is conservative one.
    2. Chances of finding a like minded life partner diminishes (Vanishes would be a correct term given this generation's thinking) 
    3. Last but most important of all - The chances of you becoming a successful politician is "Very Less" ( 1 in a Million chance is what I feel).

    WAY 2 : Earn a million bucks & learn how to spend it ( I meant spending in politics ) Remember Rajnikanth's Classic movie - Arunachalam? If you had watched that movie you might have a fair idea of why money is most important for a politician. In my opinion this is one of the next to easy ways of becoming a politician.
    But on the downside earning a million bucks is not easy and takes years unless you are born with a golden spoon ( With gold prices skyrocketing! ) . So essentially you are someone-turned-politician at the age of 50 maybe. 

    WAY 3 : Marry a well established politician's Son/Daughter. We all know how this works and we have seen many examples. Hence, I feel there is no need to elaborate on this.

    WAY 4: Be from a political family. The most fail safe way to become a politician provided you really have it in you to become one. Again this way also does't need a detailed account as we all know about this ( Its a shame if you don't) 

    FINAL VERDICT : ITS IN YOUR FATE! Although ways 4,3 & 2 seem the best bet to me. 

    Okay we now we know who a politician is & what are the ways to become one, Lets get to why this profession isn't exactly a career option at large. 

    1. The general image of a politician is not so good. Thanks to the corrupt ones & the ones with a pot belly chewing paan wearing a white kurta/white dothi and talking rubbish ( No offence meant! That's the image we all associate with a politician commonly).
    2. Lack to steady monthly income ( Hang on! I know you might be looking at this wide eyed. I meant lack of steady monthly income till you become a "successful"politician. The struggling days!)
    3. Scandals, blackmailing and what not - Accept it or forget about your career.
    4. Private life under constant public scrutiny. We all watch News channels & Read Newspapers ( Chances of being in the front page & Making headlines is very high be it in a good/ bad way, mostly in a bad way though!)
    5. Discouragement. If you were to tell your parents/ friends that you want to rule this country & do good for it, first thing they ask you - Are you barking mad?! has the summer heat got to you?! ( Unless you are from a family of politicians you are sure to hear this!). 

    The list seems to be a tad too long for me to put it in writing. Hence its best to leave it the top 5 that came to my head while writing this.

    Its obvious that  "POLITICIANS ARE NOT MADE,THEY ARE BORN".You simply need to have it in your blood. In your DNA make up! If you don't have it then you don't stand a chance of becoming a "successful" politician in this generation! Reality bites! Literally! 

    P.S: My view of things. No offence meant. Its not easy to run a country with ever growing population. Takes gut to become a politician.