Public Policy Choices – Making them Right!

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Hilights


Politics & Governance,Public Arena

Summary:

Right decisions about Public Policies arise from proper understanding of, ‘Right’ from ‘Wrong’ and ‘Good’ from ‘Evil’, and of the concepts of morality, equity, justice and fair play.

Don’t allow your personal desires to demand more from others than they are voluntarily offering, or unnecessarily punish the innocents, or reward bullies and protectionists, or be unduly intolerant of other’s freedoms or rights, or demand reservations or special considerations for other than present disabilities, claiming reparations today for alleged historic discrimination which are not the responsibility of the others in the present.

Right decisions in matters that effect others, lead to public policies that ensure harmony in both social and work environments in Society.

However to make such right decisions, it is essential that you understand the effects or consequences of your decisions, and that in order implement such decisions you need to be living in a Democracy.

Highlights:

Understanding Choice – Living with the consequences – Equitable Taxation – Demanding right – Reservation/Affirmative actions and Discrimination – Freedom of Speech – Tolerate intolerance – Don’t reward Bullies o Protectionists – Judge actions morally and ethically.

Key Concepts:

A Democracy is by definition a system that allows for the rights to freedom of speech, freedom of choice and of freedom to worship any God you choose to in a manner you choose or, to believe in no God at all. Also to be effective a Democracy needs a largely literate population with a sizeable middle class which tolerates different points of view and a Government which protects those without political power and which recognizes people’s right to oppose its policies and to even vote it out. However, some limits must exist on the individual’s right to exercise such freedoms so as not to infringe on the right to similar freedoms of others. When making Policies we have to determine the general extent and validity of such limits?

We also have to understand the ethics, morality and equity of such decisions and the consequences they have, both on every one of us as individuals and on public policies that affect all of us and that call for limits on our individual freedom of choice or decision/action.Stephen Landsburg in his book, ‘The Big Question!Helps us to understand such issues.

If we decide to take the opinions of every one about such freedoms, we would end up with very narrow limits, as few things are such as to be acceptable to all. It is therefore necessary to begin with the state of absolute freedom and then only put such limits on them to the extent that such freedoms are available to all. Such freedoms are of two classes, those that essentially concern only the person exercising the freedom and their families (See –‘Personal Choices-have you made each right?’) and the rest which also affect others and thus call for acceptance or toleration by them and are dealt with herein.

If we decide to take the opinions of every one about…freedoms, we would end up with very narrow limits, It is therefore necessary to begin with the state of absolute freedom and then only put such limits on them to the extent that such freedoms are available to all.

Understanding Choice:

Choices arise and call for decisions to be taken when you seek or face the need for betterment, for a change. Of course as Stephen.R.Covey notes- change itself has changed. Today it feels accelerated in all fields more than anyone ever imagined. However the one thing that has not changed and never will is the fact that there are timeless and universal principles. They apply everywhere in the world and at all times. Principles inherent in the concept of Dharma like fairness, honesty, respect, ethics, morality and accountability, which governs our lives in the same way that natural laws like gravity, dictate the consequences of falling off a building. If we live by these principles, they will work for us to make our lives better and happier.

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