The recent spate of political murders
in the state of Kerala has left people there shocked and anguished. Everyone wonders
how a state with the most literacy rate and the best socio-economic indicators can witness such mindless violence. Note that Kerala also has a history of political violence
and a recent RTI enquiry has revealed that 56 people have died in a decade as a result of such violence.
Now its natural for anyone sane to wonder why people would kill in a bloodthirsty manner in the name of political party. But such wonder is misplaced. Political violence in fact is what should come naturally to a state like Kerala. Don't for a moment think Kerala owes its literacy and socio-economic development to political activism. Attribute such progress instead to the enterprising Malayalee who's sacrificed much to move to places where he engaged in fruitful economic activity that resulted in his personal prosperity. This personal prosperity is the real and only reason behind Kerala's economic progress and literacy. It's no thanks to the state. It's thanks to the 'working' individual.
Coming back to the violence and why its natural, note. When it comes to politics in Kerala, the default lesson taught to every political worker is that the collective (read, party) is above the individual. The individual doesn't matter. Its the party that needs to be worshipped, at the cost of subjugating and subverting individual liberties. Politics in Kerala relegates the value of an individual to nothing. Is it any wonder then that people die in political violence?
Societies that hold the collective over the individual must not harbour any hope for progress. Political activism in India may not mirror what's happening in Kerala, but what's still disturbing is that its a thin line that divides the two. If its communism that enjoys its place in the sun in Kerala, its socialism that constantly rears its ugly head in India. As a nation we still hang on to the to the idiocy of according the collective greater status over the individual. All in the name of social progress.
Raising the collective over the individual is immoral, because such arrangements give the individual no rights except those that ultimately serve the collective. As I mentioned before, nations that hold such precepts dear have a zero chance at progress. Also, such nations present marketers with diminished hope. If individual liberty supersedes the collective's, a nations prospers, marketers thrive.
Individual liberty always translates into producer-consumer liberty. Which means, producers can produce without fear from the collective. Consumers can consume, again with no such fears.
Here's hoping as a nation we get to that. Here's hoping the political worker in Kerala realises its the individual that matters most, not the party.