Saturday, April 10, 2021

3240 : Affirmation asymmetry

I work deep in data. And one of my fundamental learnings in the past few years has been to "trust the data"....not necessarily presented in terms of an excel, but also observed/measured or seen data.

Take the example of the affirmation (or reservations) or benefits for the disadvantaged.

So I believe my household help (never use "maid", just learned from an indignant Twitter rant.......semantics :-))fits into the disadvantaged curve. She is poor, she has to fend for her children and works triply hard to keep her head above water.

From my limited understanding - very few affirmations reach her (including something as simple as rations - or subsidized food). She has very little access to cheap(er) food or good water or loos.


Let's say she makes about 12k a month with the 3-5 jobs she does. 

If somehow she started making around 25k, and she would suddenly be in a slum rehabilitation program, she would get a ration card, and also access to cleaner loos and water.

And yet even at this level, she won't be able to take advantage of a subsidized loan or education loan waiver. For that, she would have to be at around 40k, so that she can at least put her children in a reliable school.

The point I am saying is this is a with a huge base.

Most of the benefits of affirmation are chewed off by the top of the pyramid. The bottom gets little or nothing.

That makes the world we live, a very self-serving world. Also by NRC or CAA or something equivalent, we are cutting away the bottom of the pyramid from ever having the chance to be included at all.

And since they don't have any incentives at this point - we don't have a "lever" on them, and hence cannot control how they vote. That singularly makes them dispensable.

A grim aside thought - take the top of the pyramid - they do take a lot of state benefits (affirmation or otherwise), but possibly don't count their blessings. They assume it's their right. So they are inert to the "levers"

Are they hence are dispensable too? And when is that happening?

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