(Mis)Rule of Law

From Reuters

The wrangle over an energy deal between the billionaire Ambani brothers has highlighted the risks inherent in an economy dominated by big family businesses and spurred calls for the government to intervene.

The latest dispute between the feuding brothers could discourage investment in the energy sector as the country scrambles to shore up its energy security.

It also tests governance standards for a nation that ranks a lowly 180 when it comes to enforcing contracts on the World Bank’s index on ease of doing business. Only Benin ranks worse.

Unless the case relates to the release of a new film banned for some ludicrous reason, or politicians bad-mouthing each other, or women dancing around in napkins, or people not attending government functions, or some other stupid “public interest” issue, the judiciary is incapable of deciding anything, most importantly on the issue of sanctity of contracts. That’s why cases drag on for years and its easier, for a vast majority of people, to employ goons, or bribe policemen, to “settle” disputes rather than do the same in court. And the clowns in parliament, and the government, only encourage this process.

Reuters is wrong about Benin. Its better than us at enforcing contracts.

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Comments

  • you12  On July 16, 2009 at 11:06 pm

    I am starting to believe more and more that a society’s value judgments matter more than the actual laws it has.

    Of course it doesn’t help that we have useless laws and useless mechanisms for such laws.

    • Aristotle The Geek  On July 17, 2009 at 12:25 am

      By that, if you mean people get what they “actually” want, not what they “say” they want, you are right. If 8 out of 10 people in society are comfortable with something, its very unlikely that opposition from the other 2, howsoever vociferous, will help. Or laws for that matter.

      What’s funny in all this is, there will always be a group of people who know which buttons to press to get everyone agitated. And they press it. And these are never the “good” guys.

  • you12  On July 18, 2009 at 12:18 am

    By that, if you mean people get what they “actually” want, not what they “say” they want,

    Not necessarily, For example people show respect and affiliation towards socialist policies then complain about the power in the hands of the few. Of course, lack of knowledge plays its part as well.

    If 8 out of 10 people in society are comfortable with something, its very unlikely that opposition from the other 2, howsoever vociferous, will help. Or laws for that matter.

    True. But out of those 8 ,6 will be following the advice of the influential 2 without really choosing their own position. You can’t really sell ethics and liberty. People have to understand on their own but that is a very bleak possibility.

    What’s funny in all this is, there will always be a group of people who know which buttons to press to get everyone agitated. And they press it. And these are never the “good” guys.

    True. Indian politics is mass hysteria on a mass level.

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