The Push-Ahead Economy

This is not really about economy per se. This is more about courtesy.

People everywhere seem to be in a tearing hurry. So much so, that they seem to be ignoring the essential courtesy of saying sorry when they even unintentionally brush you past, with their bags for example. Their assumption seems to be, that “I am in real hurry, I got to catch my flight or I have to get to my meeting, and this bloke is standing on the way, so what if I hit him, shove him, or push him around, it does not matter even if he is in a queue”.

How valid is this assumption ?

Not valid at all, in my opinion.

The day when rash negligence and irreverent behaviour takes hold of people (who are otherwise the normal kind of folks), that would be when their success becomes irrelevant. One can only assume that their outlook on life is going to be equally rash and radical, with only their individual success being the sole criterion for their move-ahead in life.

It may not be the only thing in life. We all know that.

I was amazed at the number of guys in airports who seem to be intent on getting “there” first, and then they do nothing after securing their place in the queue for “something” – overall, they seem to be taking the same time as everyone else at the end of the exercise. When we do care for others such as old people and kids and families, then we develop what is called “patience”. This important characteristic is not the anti-thesis of “measured success”. It could co-exist.

In a country like India, one needs to have enormous patience as things anyway move slowly, starting from the traffic on the roads. Economy may be growing at a rate in excess of 7%, but the traffic and things to move the economy do not move in sync, they actually move rather slowly. That fact, however, does not impact the GDP growth rate. The only downside is that if the infrastructure build-out speed is enhanced, India could see a potential rise of couple of percentage points in its GDP growth rate, which would then lead to a faster uplift of a significant percentage of the population beyond the poverty line.

My strong belief is that courtesy depicts the culture of a society. If one constantly suspects that the guy ahead is deliberately slowing down to the detriment of the rest of us, then things will not go as planned. No one slows down without a reason.

Think about – no one really slows down without a valid reason. So, why trample on a number of folks, hit and smash, and try reaching your destination ? We can only be successful by helping the weak links of our society to pull together towards a greater performance.


Vijay Srinivasan
31st March 2012


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