Is Endogenous Change Possible?

In a post last month in which I asked when will we be able to distinguish treachery from fidelity, I wrote —

There is something deeply depressing about a nation that does not recognize merit, that is unable to distinguish between loyalty and treachery. We have a long way to go before we become a modern civilized nation.

To which a friend emailed me saying, “You hit it. We’re not a modern civilized nation. Not only do I think we are not modern and civilized but I think those qualities are declining. The Indian state is made up of the same people that constitute Indian society. Ergo, how is endogenous change possible?” I wrote back in reply and here’s my response, for the record.
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The Heap of Prettied-up Scrap known as the Aircraft Carrier Admiral Gorshkov

Aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov
Aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov

It just keeps getting better. The refitted Admiral Gorskhov — which is being reincarnated as INS Vikramaditya — will be delivered sometime soon but will not have anti-missile defense for a few more years. What does that make it? A heap of prettied-up scrap best used as a sitting duck for random target practice.

Is this a joke? Actually, it was launched on April 1st, 1982. Perhaps it is an April fool’s joke, although a very costly one for a desperately poor third world country (DPTWC). Here’s what I wrote over four years ago in April 2009 in a post titled “The War and the Circus.”

See the excerpt below the fold.
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