Sunday, 6 September 2015

Schweke's Trivialisation of Hindu Nationalism

Schweke is a young German scholar whose recent essay trivializes various Anglophone post-Ayodhya academic availability cascades about how like Hindutva is Hitlerism and Modi must be Adolph coz Adolph was Austrian and Austrians keep attacking Italians, and Soniaji is Italian; what's more, all Austrians yodel except Adolph who gave fiery speeches instead- thus Modi is Hilter because he doesn't yodel.
Schweke's essay is worth skimming because it takes at face value our Careerist Campus Lefties various vainglorious screeds shrilly crying wolf and pretending to battle Nazism in the streets, or the Hindu equivalent of the Taliban in the Temples, while actually holed up in an Ivy League ivory tower.
In doing so, Schweke (who may have a German sense of humor like mine- I was born in Bonn- and thus achieves his best effects by simulating stupidity under a deadpan pedantic style) takes the piss out of our Academics something rotten by pointing out that, no matter what Oxbridge eminence they have attained, they still don't have a sleek Cliodynamic Mercedes, by way of Theory of History, in their intellectual garage but rely on an old fashioned Ambassador car which, since its wheels fell off long ago, now has to be be towed around on a bullock cart.

Thus Schweke says-
Schweke is not lying about the relevant Academic literature- the vast mass of which is written by Hindus. What he isn't mentioning is that the Hindus are lying and don't care if their fellow Hindus know they are lying because it's all in a good cause- viz. the advancement of their own career and the careers of those of their own clique who pretend to criticize them.
Hindu nationalism- apart from that of the Gandhi/Nehru INC 'Syndicate'- has 2 separate roots
1) Bengali Swamis, including Westernised Swamis like Vivekananda and Aurobindo and his younger brother, who helped inspire Jugantar which split after Bagha Jatin's death with people like M.N Roy turning to Moscow while others re-grouped under C.R Das. In general, there was a Leftward movement but both the Ananda Marg and the Bhaktivedanta movement share a common genealogy in this respect. Modi pays lip service to Vivekananda and Shyama Prasad Mookherjee- though the latter was actually avenged on Sheikh Abdullah by Kidwai- but Bengal has been marginalized by stupid Economic policies and no longer counts.
2) Chitpavan reformism. Under the Peshwas, the Chitpavans earned the well merited hatred of other Brahmins- e.g. the Deshasts though the Daivadnya Brahmins were worse treated - as well as other castes.
 Under the Raj, there was a danger that young men from this community would simply turn into village thugs. However to rise up through education- e.g. by taking jobs as teachers etc- rules re. ritual purity had to be dispensed with. Thus Social Reform within the Chitpavan community was directly linked to repairing links with other communities and getting rid of ritualistic thinking. Ultimately, people like Ambedkar found that the R.S.S- which had to turn away from Revolutionary politics because the British could use still smoldering anti-Chitpavan sentiment to their advantage and punish people like Savarkar very severely- was more committed to getting rid of the most obnoxious aspects of caste than people like Nehru who genuinely didn't understand what all the fuss was about.

Savarkar, it must be said, was originally Shyamji Krishna Varma's protege and his first book peddled the standard myth that Hindus and Muslims were always cuddling and kissing till the Brits turned up and made them get jobs- which led to rivalry- boo to you British man! Kindly go away so Hindu Muslim kissing and cuddling can resume.
A long spell in prison- not the cushy sort which M.N Roy preferred to Stalin's Gulag- deranged Savarkar completely. Poor fellow, by the time he died he was praising both Socialism- that 'servile State' which his mentor, a staunch devotee of 'Harbhat Pendse', opposed- as well as the consumption of panchgavya, though he had earlier admitted he was a little squeamish about quaffing cow's urine and chowing down on bovine shit. My own Mimamsa, I should mention, holds that the holy cow's blood (which the Masai drink), not its urine was meant and that beef patties should be substituted for cowpats.

The one good thing about the RSS was that it pariah status after Independence meant that it was less open to careerist entryism and thus gained an enviable salience in the Seventies during the Nav Nirman and anti-Emergency campaigns. Still, had the Communists got their act together- if, for example, Jyoti Basu had been permitted by his politburo to become P.M- and if Atal or Advani had died, the Sangh might have remained marginal. Instead, people like Modi were able to come up by arbitraging the distance between Delhi and Nagpur but this could only happen because of a new tech savvy Managerialist Weltgeist which rendered Gandhi and Marx and Nehru impotent as anything other than Mickey Mouse brands. Modi didn't read Deendayal Upadhyay (a joke name for a silly U.P bhaiyya who hadn't the nous to keep from falling off a train) or anything else for that matter, but paid attention when sent to America to learn about modern P.R techniques. Later he actually bought a cowboy hat!
How could this guy not become P.M when nobody- literally nobody- was saying 'I want to be P.M because I'll be good at the job'? Rahul Baba was saying 'It doesn't matter who becomes P.M. Mummy has already handed over power to the village panchayat. M.P's have nothing to do. Ministers have no power. The P.M's office is wholly ceremonial'  Mulayam was saying 'My people kicked me out and made my son Chief Minister. Give me the job to preserve my honor'. Mamta was saying 'It is all a terrible conspiracy. I will expose it. Who is being raped? They are all loose women. Since I am C.M of Bengal, if anyone should be P.M it must be me. Calcutta used to be the Capital- not Delhi. Who stole the Capital from us? It is all a conspiracy due to loose women who are falsely saying they are raped. I will beat them all with my chappal.' Jayalaitha too asserted Tamil pride. If she had to choose between Jail and being P.M, she was ready to commute to Delhi.
But facts are facts. U.P politicians, like Charan Singh, only want to be P.M when U.P throws them out. Chandrashekhar was so useless, Rajiv recognized that it legitimated his claim to the office he had himself previously held. Narasimha Rao, poor fellow, only got the job because Shankar Dayal Sharma wasn't interested. As P.M, his own diplomats turned him into a laughing stock- as a proverbially verbose Babu- in International circles. Still, one can't deny he was intelligent. Thus his being sentenced to jail was entirely condign, though of course he never actually spent a day behind bars.
The fact is. Politics is trivial. Being P.M doesn't matter- that's why the dynasty which had least competence (Nehru spent only a year or two doing actual politics, running the Allahabad Municipal Corporation) was permitted to reign in New Delhi- which has only began to look like a proper City since about 1987. Under Indira, it turned out C.M's too were just going through the motions. Thus she could appear an autocrat. But an autocrat without power to change the country- the Emergency was just a story about Potemkin villages- and once everybody saw the truth of this, even Rajiv or Sonia or Rahul or Rahul's cat could be P.M. It wouldn't make a difference.

Can Modi make a difference? Yes. Leaders should be good at P.R- both at home and abroad. That's Modi's professional forte. But changing the optics can only take a country so far. Ultimately, Modi will be rendered ineffectual, his P.R coups increasingly trivial, unless those who voted for him show determination to change their own lives. How? They must migrate from a culture of rent-seeking to one of risk-taking. This is the fundamental bifurcation or source of conflict within any class or interest group. When the rent-seekers win, everybody loses because Uncertainty is a fact of life. Risk taking reduces Uncertainty whereas the determination to hang on to rents no matter how the fitness landscape changes increases catastrophic risk. Those old soldiers fighting valiantly for bigger pensions don't realize they are stoking up a Greek style disaster- they themselves may die before the Ponzi scheme collapses but their last senile act will have endangered the country they, in the prime of their manhood, shed their blood to protect.

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