Weekend links: Jan 26 2014

Let’s start with a Business Line blogpost about Arvind Kejriwal that features AAP in a slightly positive light before moving on to a Hindu article that features at least one aspect of AAP in a terrible light

I’m featuring both of these here because I agree with both of them, and also because they belong to the same publication, so that takes away some of the cynicism that we face while discussing such topics.

This is perhaps the most fascinating thing I’ve watched this week – fresh water fish hunting birds!

I really loved Amit Agarwal’s interview at Lifehacker. 

I never thought it could be someone’s job to legally sell their last name, but everyone’s got to make a living, right?

Dubai is using drones for firefighting, really amazing, right?

Finally, the ever brilliant xkcd offers the best definition of automation I’ve yet read.

Enjoy your weekend!


4 thoughts on “Weekend links: Jan 26 2014”

  1. Actually lot of these stunts done by AAP have already been done by parties in South(Late NTR has possibly done everything under the sun).It may be new for Delhi. Also if Babri Masjid was demolished a heavy price was paid by BJP, they have never come back in UP after that.Image of some top leaders were tarnished forever and some faced imprisonment.
    Same way if emergency was declared by Cong, besides the punishment from electorate the PM also had to face incarceration. So its a foolish argument made in favour of AAP.
    Corruption and harassment by cops is because some people want to circumvent the law and encourage this behaviour . Isnt AAP doing the same exact thing, if cops dont toe their line, they are to be punished even if its against the law?

  2. Talking about the blogspot where the author uses street hawkers and roadside snack sellers to make a case for AAP. Above all, her specialty is business journalism, eh? Does she not see and understand that street hawkers and roadside snack seller are the biggest tax evaders and hindrance to India’s progress?

    First of all, they are squatting on the public place, the place which is financed from the taxes collected from hard working Aam aadmi. They have not contributed a single paisa to build-out of the infrastructure the hawkers are using. They obstruct the free movements of the public. The public in turn is inconvenienced and starts utilizing road as pedestrian way and jeopardize themselves. This in turn disrupts traffic and traffic comes to halt, this increases dust pollution. The motorcades in turn start honking and noise pollution goes up. These squatters just elevated unproductiveness, inefficiencies, and pollution, health hazards.

    Secondly, and I hope Finance Ministers ear perks up, they are not paying any taxes like the legal shops or corporates do. They do not pay any taxes on the income derived on the sale. They do not pay VAT or service taxes. They do not pay any property taxes. They do not pay state and municipal taxes.

    Thirdly, they do not pay any utility (electricity, water or garbage removal) bills. Above all they end up stealing these services. Then people wonder why their utility bills are going up?

    Fourth, they form the biggest obstruction to the business of the law abiding mom and pop shops that are legal (meaning they have permits and licenses, file income taxes, pay state and municipal taxes, pay utility bills etc.). These squatters by erecting their shops in front of the legal shops, results in the destruction of the brand value of the legal shops. The visibility of the legal shops diminishes and pathway to the legal shops are blocked by the squatters. Therefore the destruction of brand value of the legal shops.

    Fifth, these squatters because their operating cost is lower than the operating cost of the legal shops ( thanks to evading taxes, utility bills, and they do not reinvest) are the biggest threat to the development and innovation of the sector. The quality suffers too.

    Finally, since these squatters do not come under same purview of regulation that applies to the legal shops, they are the biggest fomenter and source of corruption.

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