As the 2024 parliamentary election approaches the Indian political scene is heating up rapidly. The sitting prime minister Narendra Modi doesn’t want to lose election at any cost and he and his party are making all desperate attempts to defeat their political opponents by hook or crook. All institutions are subverted and being used for the highest level of political witch hunt, which we haven’t seen in the history of Indian politics. Rahul Gandhi – the leader of the main opposition Congress party – has emerged as a strong competitor of Narendra Modi, especially after his Bharat Jodi Yatra and the exposure of the nexus between Modi and billionaire corporate tycoon Adani. In a quick succession of events Rahul Gandhi was convicted in a defamation case and got a (suspended) sentence of 2 years imprisonment after which he was quickly disqualified from being a member of the parliament. This has created a political firestorm. This event has united the opposition parties against the Modi government. Amidst these political events, the Aam Aadmi Party leader and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has started his own campaign of attacking the craftily created image of Narendra Modi. Kejriwal is questioning the educational qualifications of the prime minister and he is expressing his doubts that Modi’s degrees are fake. He is simultaneously raising the question in front of the nation about the educational background of country’s prime minister. He said,
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal on 1 April has again raised questions on PM Modi’s education qualification, a day after Gujarat court imposed ₹25,000 fine against him. Kejriwal said that HC order against him has increased doubt on PM Modi’s degree. He asked if “PM degree is fake?”
While addressing a press conference, the Delhi CM said, “It’s important that the PM has to be educated because he has to take a lot of decisions in a single day. HC order has increased doubt on PM Modi’s degree. If he has a degree and it’s real, then why isn’t it being shown?”
In a recent Tweet Arvind Kejriwal asked this question,
Does 21st century India need an educated PM?
I am going to answer his question here. The simple answer is, it doesn’t matter. It does’t matter whether country’s prime minister is educated or not. It doesn’t matter whether the prime minister is a PhD or an illiterate. Why? Let us see.
Again, a basic understanding of the laws of economics is needed to fully comprehend what I am about to say.
For the sound organization of any economy it is important to choose that economic system which will solve its economic problem in a moral and efficient way. The economic problem that every economy has to solve is, what to produce, how to produce, and for whom to produce. To solve this economic problem we have three choices in front of us. One, capitalism where the means of production are privately owned; two, socialism where the means of production are owned by the government and third, the mixed economy interventionism where government is in control of the means of production but it allows some nominal private ownership of resources. As shown by Ludwig von Mises, this third system of interventionism ultimately leads us to the system of socialism. Interventionism’s middle of the road policy goes directly towards full fledged socialism.
This leaves us with only two choices: capitalism and socialism. Again as Mises demonstrated more than a century ago, the system of socialism is incapable of solving economic problems. In the absence of price and profit & loss system, socialist planners (politicians, bureaucrats, and their elite experts) cannot morally and efficiently decide what to produce, how to produce, and for whom to produce. In short, the socialist economic calculation is impossible. Government central planners will not be able to allocate resources where they are needed most urgently. They will make a mess of everything and waste precious resources.
Only with the system of capitalism where resources are privately owned can the economic problem be solved successfully. The system of private property rights will give rise to a free market economy where price and profit & loss systems will work to solve the economic problem. The higher or lower prices of the consumer goods will send a signal to the producers to produce or stop producing those goods for the consumers, and the prices of the producers goods i.e., land, labor, and time will tell the producers to use either labor or capital intensive production methods. In a nutshell producer will produce those consumer goods which will give them profit and stop production of those goods which will result in losses because consumers no longer want those goods. Thus price and profit & loss system will seamlessly adjust the economy to produce those goods that consumers most urgently want by using those production methods which are most efficient and thus profitable.
As opposed to capitalism, the system of socialism is only suitable for the use of state officials who have political power i.e., politicians, bureaucrats, fascist corporatists, and other state supporters. Mass public is excluded from getting any big benefit under socialism. Socialism fails to solve any economic problems. In the absence of the system of private property there is no free market with its price and profit & loss system. Without those systems the central planners cannot make economic calculations to solve the economic problem. Instead of satisfying the needs of consumers, state officials will use the system to further their own political power and selfish ends at the cost of the public. Socialism is neither moral – because it uses coercive political power – nor efficient.
In light of the above economic facts, if at all education – as opposed to a schooling degree – is required then it is only to know the complexities of the economy and society to follow a policy of hands off noninterventionism i.e., full fledged capitalism. An educated person will know how dangerous it is to interfere in the economy and society. He/she will know that to exercise political power over other people is unethical and inefficient. An educated person will stay a million miles away from the seats of power. He/she will never want to control other peoples’ lives or want to use them to further his/her selfish ends. By very definition political action means using others to further one’s own ends. An educated person will basically not want to be a prime minister of the country. He will not seek political power. Only megalomaniac people who think they can control others’ lives and who suffer from the god syndrome think they can control and run the economy and society according to their own wishes will seek power. And they will horribly fail in doing so.
This is why the question of prime minister’s educational qualification is irrelevant. A truly educated person will never seek power because he/she knows he can’t wield it to make anything better under a socialist state.
An educational qualification only becomes relevant when a political candidate is seeking a position of power to undo the state interventions and the socialist nature of this nation state; when he/she wants to roll back the state. Educational qualification for a prime minister only becomes relevant when we want the prime minister to be aware of the things which he is not supposed to do.
India’s problem is not the educational qualification of her prime ministers. India’s problem is her socialist constitution on basis of which this nation state was founded. As the preamble of the Indian constitution declares,
WE, THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a SOVEREIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens: JUSTICE, social, economic and political; LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship; EQUALITY of status and of opportunity; and to promote among them all FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation; IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY this 26th day of November, 1949, do HEREBY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION (emphasize mine).
Anyone who has studied the laws of economic science knows socialism is unfit for organizing an economy or society. As Ludwig von Mises a century ago showed, the socialist economic calculation is impossible. Socialism basically is impossible. As long as India continues to be a socialist country there will be no improvement in the living standards of its people. It will continue to be a country of poor and hungry people. Only those who are connected with the corridors of political power will be well to do. Few billionaires will continue to amass wealth while millions will go hungry, live and die a wretched life. Indian voting public should focus on this socialist nature of the Indian nation state instead of wasting their time on non-issues like the educational qualification of prime ministers.