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On India,China and Rest of World-PART II

India and China were the economic power houses of the medieval period. In fact , if we travel back into the past, we will find that the world of today is surprisingly similar to the ancient world, as explained in this post. So how did the situation reverse in the later centuries?How did the two countries became so poor in the later centuries? To answer this question, we need to travel to 16th century in time and  to a small region in Europe known as Holland.  Holland mind you, was not a country then, but a collection of city states who came under a rather crude constitution. If you peruse the history of world, you will notice that sometimes an idea germinates in one small region but ends up changing the entire face of humanity. Wheel, fire, language and so on.. come to my mind from the ancient time. An equally important idea seeded in Holland. For, in Holland of the medieval times, the seeds of what we now call as the modern economy, were sown. The idea of a highly skilled worker, the equivalent of a techie working in Facebook or Google today, became successful in Holland. If skills like big data and AI are the hottest skills of today, the skills of yonder time were more in the lines of deep sea fishing and tannery but the difference ended there. The highly skilled were paid according to the market just as today and more importantly, they had the freedom to chose their employer.  Holland also popularized the concept of municipal bonds, where the government accepts money from public and returns it back with interest after a time. Interestingly,the money so collected was utilized to execute massive public infrastructure projects, instead of say, raise an army for invasion as was the norm at those times. A free labour market, a vibrant economy riding on the back of the fiscally solvent city administration , to top it all, Holland instituted transparent land registration. These steps enabled most people of Holland to rise above the hard ,hand to mouth existence carried out by the majority of  medieval world population.

Almost every one in Holland had a surplus , which they invested into companies. The companies  then increasingly looked for higher profits so they could provide a decent return on the investment made by the citizens. Naturally, these companies turned their sights on trade which is the only avenue that provided an opportunity to realize good profits, despite the equally potent risk and dangers involved. Specifically, one such trade caught the eye of the enterprising Holland merchants who formed a company to undertake an activity of this high importance.This was the trade with the orient or more specifically, trade with the "hind" and "chin" , or India and China as they are called now. So how did an obscure group of traders from a still more obscure land beat the might of China and India and reverse the trade flow? We will see about this in the next post. Until then.

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On India,China and Rest of World-PART I

I follow world history with considerable interest , especially related to India, China and rest of the world. If you ask me, the current state of world affairs, especially related to these countries is almost similar to the natural order that existed for most part of the human history. For comparison purpose, lets pick the late 15th to 18th centuries and compare it to the present day.
China is as inaccessible today as it was during the 16th and 17th centuries to the foreigners. Trade to Chinese empire could be conducted by the foreigners only at one port under the watchful eyes of empire's administrators.More or less like today where trade is controlled very tightly by the Chinese government. In fact Modern Chinese initiatives like the "One Belt One Road", "Belt and Road Initiative", have a number of things in common with the medieval enterprise and voyage undertaken by the chinese admiral "Zheng He". They both were intended to show Chinese Upmanship…

Transparency and Fear of Action

There is increasingly a talk in India that as CBI and the public force the politician/bureaucrats about the legality of decisions taken by them, files will stop moving and no body will be bold enough to take a decision.I find this hard to believe, since common wisdom tells that if you are a honest officer and take straight forward decisions, no one can blame you. Only those people who sought favors or who did not want to oppose their higher ups for the wrong decisions they have taken, need to be afraid and need to fear. So all this talk by politicians about processes being stalled or the like is actually crocodile tears, just to get CBI out of their backs.

The CBI and the bureaucrat - The Hindu

Secret of Happiness

To respect people, not for what they are,
but for what I am.
To fight against dislikes and bias,not in the world
but in my thoughts.
To give love unconditionally, not to free my beloved,
but to free me rather.
To hear anyone and everyone, not because they need an ear,
but because I need to hear.
To speak and write, not because others might like to read,
but because I will read.
To be disciplined and answerable, not to the society,
but to me,the living

In all these lie the secret to happy living