There’s been much written about Anna Hazare over the last few months, but no one says it quite as succinctly as my friend Peter Griffin. I quote:
1. I’m anti-corruption.
2. I’m anti-Anna Hazare.
3. Hazare is a sanctimonious right-wing tyrant so cloaked in his own virtue that he believes he is above the law.
4. The law is frequently an ass.
5. Nevertheless, the law is frequently our only hope.
6. Better the elected asses than the dictatorial unelected.
7. The government is playing into Hazare’s hands with its idiocy.
8. Yes, these views can be held simultaneously.
Here are some of the pieces I’ve written that deal directly or indirectly with Anna Hazare:
Where Anna Hazare Gets It Wrong
The Rorschach Effect in Indian Politics
India’s Second Freedom Struggle
And some good pieces by others on the subject:
FAQ: Why Anna Hazare is wrong and Lok Pal a bad idea—Nitin Pai
Of the few, by the few—Pratap Bhanu Mehta
The dangers of a movement—Ranjit Hoskote
The Making of an Authority: Anna Hazare in Ralegan Siddhi—Mukul Sharma
Spare Us the Gandhian Halo—Hartosh Singh Bal
The Anna Hazare Show—Manu Joseph
Time to Step Back—Pratap Bhanu Mehta
And also, here’s an interesting piece on Hazare’s media strategy.
All this is not to say, of course, that our government hasn’t behaved entirely ridiculously in all this. They’re also clowns. Such it goes.
Update: Also read this excellent piece by Gautam Patel: Rupees, Annas And Vice.
(Via Arun Simha.)