Madhav and others,
I could not agree more. Bearing in mind that economics is in fact a branch
of moral philosophy (True for Adam Smith and true too for us today if you
think about it), in situations like this where some folks and schools have
run amuck with unthoughtout mechanistic notions that confuse economics with
a sort of indifferent plumbing, it is always a good idea to look around and
try to figure out what really is going on.
So when you talk about Chambers ("putting the last first") and Gandhi, let
me add to your pantheon the great democrat Victor Hugo who put it more of
less like this (my translation and memory): We must learn to replace the
notion of charity with a far better one, solidarity.
The point in all this being that if we get our ethics right, we are going to
be far less likely to run into these silly and oh so harmful "traps of
technicity gone berserk").
Now back to EQUITY!
From: Madhav Badami, Prof. [mailto:madhav.g.badami@...
Sent: Thursday, 26 July, 2012 19:14
Subject: RE: the single concept of EQUITY
I agree. If our fundamental objectives in public policy are just and
equitable, and we put the last first, to paraphrase Robert Chambers, and
give voice to the voiceless, including the environment, all else follows, as
the night the day. As Mahatma Gandhi -- sadly forgotten in the land of his
birth -- said, it is futile to dream up systems (and may I say, analytical
approaches) so perfect that no one will need to be good. This is precisely
why I said the fault is not in our analytical approaches, but in ourselves;
and that transport policy, like all public policy (whether related to urban
transport or public sanitation in India or health care in the USA), is
fundamentally about ethics and politics, and only then about science,
technology, and economics.
"To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle." -- George
Madhav G. Badami, PhD
School of Urban Planning and McGill School of Environment McGill University
815 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, QC, H3A 2K6, Canada
Phone: 514-398-3183 (Work)
Fax: 514-398-8376; 514-398-1643
From: FEKBRITTON [fekbritton@...
Sent: 26 July 2012 12:53
To: Madhav Badami, Prof.; 'Anjali Mahendra'; 'Alok Jain'
'Sustainable Transport in the south'
Subject: the single concept of EQUITY
Not meaning to talk all the time about the same subject, but our position
(my position) is that if we wisely base all aspects of our
transport/mobility system investments and policies on the single concept of
EQUITY, just about all the injustices and stupidities (and heresies -- I
liked that a lot Alok) wash right out of the system. ( A bit on that in
process at http://equitytransport.wordpress.com/.)