About 80% of those who I did engineering with in India are in the US. These are hard-working, disciplined, very well-educated people. They work in top companies and pay their taxes. They follow the law. They live in nice houses. They send their kids to public schools. Their kids outperform in mathematics and sciences, creating competitive force on others to perform. They put a lot of emphasis on their children to participate in extracurricular activities: swimming, horse riding, ballet, etc. The kids excel in spelling competitions and chess. My acquaintances participate in the local community. Despite being religious, they are secular in their social conduct. They donâ€™t do drugs or participate in illegal activities.
Yet, virtually every one of these Indians I know voted for Obama.
Whenever voting patterns of a subset of the society deviates significantly from the general pattern, it shows existence of different cultural memes in that subset. In a democracy, this become particularly important when the subsetsâ€”of minorities, women and the very youngâ€”are swing factors in elections.
There was a strong element of group-think behind the voting decision of my Indian acquaintances. When they went to vote, they mostly dressed up very nicely and went in groups of other Indians. They made it a celebration.
They support Obama-care, well-paid teachers in publicly run schools, and a strong police with authority to accost people. They want to participate in every feel-good policy, from helping poor Africans to Global Warming. They like strong regulatory control on industry. They want to outlaw guns. They have no problems in getting rid of â€œcriminalsâ€ without the due process of the law. They tend to trust the US government and want it to do more. They unquestionably accept US interference in foreign countries. They think of politicians as celebrities and show grovelling respect for bureaucrats. They invite politicians as â€œChief Guestsâ€ in community and religious functions, trusting that this would earn their community favours.
Alas, Indians have brought to the US exactly the same worldviews that has made India an utterly dysfunctional place. They have a different view on the individual. At its foundations, their beliefs come from the fact that the individual be subservient to the authority and to the greater cause. The faÃ§ade of the greater good helps them rationalize their corrupt beliefs. As full participants in THE MATRIX, Indians are productive members of the society. This cannot be said for their contribution in the realm of philosophy and public policy. Their vote works against individualism, one of key elements that made the US a great country.
Indians look at it favourably that Obama has inducted a record numbers of Indians in his administration. Obama calls himself a â€œdesiâ€ (Hindi word for â€œlocalâ€) in front of Indian crowds and has shown affinity towards Indian gods. Michelle Obama danced with girls in India, endearing her to Indians. A few drone strikes to kill some innocent children in Pakistan leave a positive impression among Indians. He has the skin color closer to that of Indians, making them feel more at home with Obama.
But what has this got to do with him being the President? They did not vote for him for his merit. Alas, Indians voted for tribalism, favours, and the nanny state. They voted for exactly the same reasons that make India a pathetic place, wallowing in poverty, totalitarianism and chaos.
Indians are socially conservative. They get married and then have kids, almost never as a single parent. They earn a healthy a $88,000 per household compared to $49,800 nationwide. They are anti-gay, in general. And, alas, hold racist views against Blacks and Mexicans. Were they to vote based on values they holdâ€”irrespective of whether the values are rational or notâ€”they would have voted for Republicans.
Alas, when I questioned them about why they voted for Obama the responses never went further than slogan level sound-bites. Despite being well educated engineers, their thinking is driven by mysticism, existing as split personality in their engineering minds. The same is the case within India, where rational analysis is strongly shunned. There is no critical thinking or analysis. Everything must operate from the guts. The spices that contribute to the predicament of India are added as a flavour in American elections.
So my acquaintances in the US voted not for merit but for tribal affiliations. They did not vote for values that made the US a great place but for those that made India a wretched country. They voted based on mysticism not based on rationality.
A lot of immigrants voted not very differently from the way my Indian acquaintances voted. A lot of Blacks and women did the same. These subgroups must think over their fundamental beliefs and what their duty as a voter is. They must ask themselves how much they are responsible for the degradation of the American politics over the last few decades after suffrage was expanded to include them.
(I have no interest in Republicans, who I find a shade more repulsive than I find Democrats. The above is only to challenge the paradigms of the voters, which irrespective of who they vote for has contributed to the degeneration of the US)