Saturday, August 29, 2009

I am not alone

An excerpt from the book "Revolutionary Wealth" by Alvin & Heidi Toffler.

As a then-leading member of the U.S. Senate, Connie Mack, once complained to us:

We never have more than two and a half uninterrupted minutes for anything on Capitol Hill. There’s no time to stop and think or to have anything approaching an intellectual conversation….

We have to spend two thirds of our time doing public relations, campaigning or raising campaign funds. I’m on this committee, that task force, the other working group, and who knows what else. Do you think I can possibly know enough to make intelligent decisions about all the different things I’m supposed to know about? It’s impossible. There’s no time. So my staff makes more and more decisions.

Very reassuring.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

You are the Assistant Commisioner of Income-tax when...

Every letter / notice / circular gets marked to you irrespective of its intended recipient. And you are expected to respond to it.

You unconsciously attain specialization in sending reports of whose purpose you have no idea and of whose contents you have no clue.

You get RTI applications asking for data pertaining to the last 20, 30 or even 50 years when the Income-tax act deprives you of any power to look into issues more than six years old.

Any file you open reminds you of the Harappan script you saw in your sixth grade history textbook.

You start nodding to everything your boss says irrespective of its practical viability and your personal capability.

You wish that you could outsource the task of hearing the Chartered Accountants / Advocates / Income-tax Practitioners to Sach ka Saamna.

You spend 90 % of your time searching for your staff while they spend 90% of their time searching for the file you asked for.

The remaining 10% of the time is spent counting the number of digits in figures of the Balance Sheet and Profit & Loss accounts.

All you see during examination of books of accounts is numbers scrolling down like the famed matrix screensaver.

You issue refunds worth lakhs of rupees, but your own reimbursement of official travel bill of Rs 340 never sees the light of the day.

You realize that if your salary is linked to the number of signatures you affix, you could breeze your way into the Forbes list within a year.