Many long years ago (ought to be long years ago as I am already 35), in a distant land called Delhi lived a boy, not a very intelligent, smart or good looking, well rather ordinary but he was well mannered just the same.
He was son of an Indian government employee who in turn was head of big Indian (middle class) Joint family. Generally, fathers like these usually fall in category of people with sound accounting background; primarily because their life revolve around keeping record of each penny spent & each penny saved. Now that we know the landscape, here’s what happened that fine day:
One day this young boy, (when he was first introduced the concept of averages & data collection, that usually happens in class V – Introduction to Statistics) thinking that his pocket money allowance of Rs 12 per day was rather less, asked his friends about their allowances & obtained some data.
He then presented these data to his father and asked for an increase in his allowance as he was getting less than average amount. (For mathematicians & statisticians let’s say average of data collected was Rs. 14)
His father, obviously smarter & much experienced in the art of influencing with numbers, countered pointing out that boy’s allowance was more than the average amount. His argument was the maximum frequency in data collected is, say 7, the corresponding value of this frequency being, say 10 (MODE); the average pocket money is actually 10 and not 14.
Now, that you know the boy was not very intelligent, (not understanding MODE Vs MEAN logic) & was extremely well mannered (countering father being considered as not being well mannered) agreed to father’s explanation & just reconciled to his pocket money of Rs 12 as being sufficient & at par with colleagues
Today that boy, and many other boys like him are average adults of India. They are not trained in statistics & numbers, not that they are not intelligent but they are not intelligent enough to understand the politics of numbers. Hence they do not understand much of what leaders are advertising these days.
Some leaders are propagating great development that some states have gone through. Others are talking about multiple development schemes started by their government.
My fear is that just like that boy reconciled & agreed to the counter argument of his father, average Indians might get influenced with these advertisements.
& if that is going to happen this time round, we will be voting for “Status quo”; corruption, never ending price rises, economic crises/paralysis & communal politics.
& just to conclude my kid years after would write, “Many long years ago………………..