chapter 1: Lazy villagers sitting under a tree
There are infinite statistics about how 42% of the people in India live under BIPL (below international poverty line of $1.25 a day). Have you always wondered where all these people are?
If you go to a fairly backward village during the spring and summer months, there is a high probability that you see the majority of people working for only four hours a day and spend the afternoons sitting under a tree. doing nothing. There is also a high probability that you'll think to yourself that, “if they worked in the afternoons instead of sitting under a tree, they'd be out of poverty by now” It did not make sense that people are lazing around in the mornings and sleeping with a hungry stomach at night.
So I did a little bit of research and found some startling results. On an average, the working male from a poor family consumes about 1650 kilo-calories of food per day (that too a fairly imbalanced diet). We humans need about 600 kilo-calories per day just to keep our heart beating, our lungs breathing and other basic life functions going. That leaves about 1050 Kcal per day which is about four hours of physical work. So what we perceive as laziness is actually helplessness. They cannot afford to work for 8 hours a day which is why they are stuck in poverty!
Chapter 2: The myth of subsidies to farmers
Every time the budget is announced, it is not unusual for tax paying middle class people in urban areas to complain about the subsidies the rural farmers get in the form of water and electricity. So I did some more research to see if their complaint was justified.
As per govt policy, every person living in a rural area (source: Planning commission of India's report on Maharasthra) is entitled to a minimum of 40 liters of water per day whereas every person living in a city is entitled to 200 liters of water a day. (we actually flush 50 liters of water everyday!)
This is just the tip of the iceberg. The govt till date has invested Rs. 7000 per person on us (people in cities) to build and maintain infrastructure to give us our 200 liters of water a day whereas it has spent only 1600 per person in infrastructure to provide 40 liters a day per person in rural areas. If they get their 200 liters of water a day, they can use it for their cattle and grow kitchen gardens which will make them healthier (and eventually wealthier).
So the subsidies are in a way giving them their fair share!
Chapter 3: Why are all terrorists Muslim?
The answer to this is really simple. Because of the mainstream media! Yes, the mainstream media seems to have reserved the word “terrorist” exclusively for Jihadists. All others who are involved in terrorist activities are given a different name by the media. A name that sounds softer and better.
So terrorists in Jharkhand are called “Maoists” or “Naxals”. Terrorists in the north eastern states are called “militants”. Tamil terrorists in Sri Lanka are dubbed as “Tigers” while the Irish terrorists were “separatists”. The Israleli terrorists are “commandos” and the communist terrorists are “revolutionaries". Terrorists in Africa are “insurgents”, The cuban terrorists were “rebels”, the Hungarian ones were “extremists”, the Chinese terrorists are “radicals” and the American terrorists are “counter-insurgents”. Looks like the Jihadists have hijacked the word terrorist!
P.S: Inspired by a quick reading of Super-freakonomics :)