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Almost half of Indians living on less than $1.50 per day consider themselves middle class

Discussion in 'World Economy' started by Averageamerican, Dec 13, 2014.

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  1. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    new study has found that a fascinatingly high percentage of people in India consider their families middle class — including 46 percent of people living in cities on $1.50 per day or less.
    The Hindu)
    The results show an extraordinary tendency for people to consider themselves middle class even if they are in fact very poor. The study defined the "lower" annual income bracket as those earning RS 36,000 per year or less, which works out to approximately $1.50 per day. And yet 46 percent of urban residents in that income bracket reported that their families were "middle class," as did 44 percent of those in rural areas.
    While data for the number of Indians within this wage range is not immediately available, to give you a rough sense of the size of this group, the World Bank estimates that in 2011, 60.6 percent of Indians were living on less than $2 per day (adjusted for purchasing power parity). Based on census results from that year, that would be about 733,600,000 people.
    Strikingly, more than half of urban Indians who had not finished high school also considered themselves middle class, as did 45 percent of rural respondents.
    A measure of progress and opportunity, rather than status?
    These results suggest that the term "middle class " is more meaningful to Indians as a measure of progress and opportunity than as a measure of current well-being.
    Those who defined themselves as middle class scored high on measures of optimism: 72 percent believe that their children will be better off than them, 62 percent report that their household economic status is improving, and 64 percent believe that the country as a whole is improving. (The study's authors note that the causal relationship could also be the other way around: perhaps considering oneself middle class has an affect on social attitudes, rather than the other way around.)
    The study also points at another intriguing possibility: that class may be beginning to replace caste in India. Although caste remains important in India, it no longer has the power that it once did. This data could be evidence that class markers are taking its place as a way to determine and measure social status. If true, then this study may be an early indicator that much greater social change is soon to follow.
     
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  2. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    Not that different in the USA, almost every one has a tendency to consider themselves middle class even if they are in fact very poor,, theres a stigma to saying your poor.
     
  3. Zeus_@21

    Zeus_@21 Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    There is nothing new in this. We all know that near about half of India lives at less than a $ 2 per day.
     
  4. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    In other countries, class seems to have more meaning then in the USA, in Chile and Argentina it was like the poorer class was another species, not so much in the USA, it was kind of like blacks were thought of 50 years ago.
     
  5. Zeus_@21

    Zeus_@21 Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    When Britishers left India, 88 percent of Indian population was in extreme poverty. Such was the miracle of great British Empire.

    Now, After 67 years of independence the number stands at near 50 percent. A 38 percent reduction is a nice improvement, but we could have done much better than this. Given the case being our leaders and bureaucrats/top brass being less corrupt & selfish.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2014
  6. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    Guess that leads to the question where you would be if the British had not been there.
     
  7. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    India could improve labor laws such as wages, hours, to improve conditions in India, end what really constitutes slavery, 13 million of them, its really hard to compete against slave labor.
     
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  8. Zeus_@21

    Zeus_@21 Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    Bengal was one of the wealthiest states before the arrival of the British. My forefathers being a part of it.

    But now it lies split into bits and pieces like West Bengal, Bangldesh and some parts of Tripura.. All after the end of the colonial era. We lost many a things mate and gained less. ;)
     
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  9. Zeus_@21

    Zeus_@21 Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    Before Independence
    The 19th century and early 20th century saw increasing poverty in India during the colonial era. Over this period, the colonial government de-industrialized India by reducing garments and other finished products manufacturing by artisans in India, importing these from Britain's expanding industry with 19th century industrial innovations, while simultaneously encouraging conversion of more land into farms, and of agricultural exports from India. Eastern regions of India along the Ganges river plains, such as those now known as eastern Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal, were dedicated to producing poppy and opium, which were then exported to southeast and east Asia particularly China, with the trade an exclusive monopoly first of East India Company, and later the colonial British institutions. The economic importance of this shift from industry to agriculture in India was large; by 1850, it created nearly 1,000 square kilometers of poppy farms in India in its fertile Ganges plains, led to two opium wars in Asia, with thesecond opium war fought between 1856 to 1860. After China accepted opium trade, the colonial government dedicated more land exclusively to poppy, the opium agriculture in India rose from 1850 through 1900, when over 500,000 acres of the most fertile Ganges basin farms were devoted to poppy cultivation,[49] opium processing factories owned by colonial officials were expanded in Benares and Patna, and shipping expanded from Bengal to the ports of East Asia such as Hong Kong, all under exclusive monopoly of the British. By early 20th century, 3 out of 4 Indians were employed in agriculture, famines were common, and food consumption per capita declined in every decade. In London, the late 19th century British parliament debated the repeated incidence of famines in India, and the impoverishment of Indians due to this diversion of agriculture land from growing food staples to growing poppy for opium export under orders of the colonial British empire.

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    Poverty was intense during colonial era India. Numerous famines and epidemics killed millions of people each. Upper image is from 1876-1879 famine in South India that starved and killed over 6 million people, while lower image is of child who starved to death during the Bengal famine of 1943.
    These colonial policies moved unemployed artisans into farming, and transformed India as a region increasingly abundant in land, unskilled labor and low productivity, and scarce in skilled labor, capital and knowledge. On an inflation adjusted 1973 Rupee basis, the average income of Indian agrarian laborer was Rs. 7.20 per year in 1885, against an inflation adjusted poverty line of Rs. 23.90 per year. Thus, not only was the average income below poverty line, the intensity of poverty was severe. The intensity of poverty increased from 1885 to 1921, then began a reversal. However, the absolute poverty rates continued to be very high through the 1930s.[9][51] The colonial policies on taxation and its recognition of land ownership claims of zamindars and mansabdars, or Mughal era nobility, made a minority of families wealthy, while it weakened the ability of poorer peasants to command land and credit. The resulting rising landlessness and stagnant real wages intensified poverty.

    The National Planning Committee of 1936 noted the appalling poverty of undivided India.

    (...) there was lack of food, of clothing, of housing and of every other essential requirement of human existence... the development policy objective should be to get rid of the appalling poverty of the people.

    —Nehru, The Discovery of India, (1946)

    The National Planning Committee, notes Suryanarayana, then defined goals in 1936 to alleviate poverty by setting targets in terms of nutrition (2400 to 2800 calories per adult worker), clothing (30 yards per capita per annum) and housing (100 sq. ft per capita).[53] This method of linking poverty as a function of nutrition, clothing and housing continued in India after it became independent from British colonial empire.

    These poverty alleviation goals were theoretical, with administrative powers resident in the British Empire. Poverty ravaged India. In 1943, for example, despite rising agricultural output in undivided South Asia, the Bengal famine killed millions of Indians from starvation, disease and destitution. Destitution was so intense in Bengal, Bihar, eastern Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand and Orissa, that entire families and villages were "wiped out" of existence. Village artisans, along with sustenance farming families, died from lack of food, malnutrition and a wave of diseases.[12] The 1943 famine was not an isolated tragedy. Devastating famines impoverished India every 5 to 8 years in late 19th century and the first half of 20th century. Between 6.1 to 10.3 million people starved to death in British India during the 1876-1879 famine, while another 6.1 to 8.4 million people died during 1896-1898 famine.[54] The Lancet reported 19 million died from starvation and consequences of extreme poverty in British India, between 1896 and 1900. Sir MacDonnell observed the suffering and poverty in 1900, and noted, "people died like flies" in Bombay.

    -- Wikipedia
     
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  10. Zeus_@21

    Zeus_@21 Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    When the population is 1.22 Billion its becomes hard to manage manage such kind of things. But things will be improve at its own pace.
     
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  11. sam2012

    sam2012 Captain FULL MEMBER

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  12. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    Not superiority, just special or exceptional.

    American exceptionalism
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Jump to: navigation, search
    Not to be confused with Americanism (ideology).
    [​IMG]
    Scholars argue that the Statue of Liberty "signifies this proselytizing mission as the natural extension of America's sense of itself as an exceptional nation."[1]
    American exceptionalism is the theory that the United States is qualitatively different from other nation states.[2] In this view, U.S. exceptionalism stems from its emergence from a revolution, becoming what political scientist Seymour Martin Lipset called "the first new nation"[3] and developing a uniquely American ideology, "Americanism", based on liberty, egalitarianism, individualism, republicanism, democracy and laissez-faire. This ideology itself is often referred to as "American exceptionalism."[4]
    Although the term does not necessarily imply superiority, many neoconservative and other American conservative writers have promoted its use in that sense.[4][5] To them, the U.S. is like the biblical "City upon a Hill" — a phrase evoked by British colonists to North America as early as 1630 — and exempt from historical forces that have affected other countries.[6]
    The theory of the exceptionalism of the U.S. can be traced to Alexis de Tocqueville, the first writer to describe the country as "exceptional" in 1831 and 1840.[7] The exact term "American exceptionalism" has been in use since at least the 1920s and saw more common use after Soviet leader Joseph Stalin chastised members of the Jay Lovestone-led faction of the American Communist Party for their belief that America was independent of the Marxist laws of history "thanks to its natural resources, industrial capacity, and absence of rigid class distinctions". American Communists started using the English term "American exceptionalism" in factional fights. It then moved into general use among intellectuals.[8][9] In 1989, Scottish political scientist Richard Rose noted that most American historians endorse exceptionalism. He suggests that these historians reason as follows:
    America marches to a different drummer. Its uniqueness is explained by any or all of a variety of reasons: history, size, geography, political institutions, and culture. Explanations of the growth of government in Europe are not expected to fit American experience, and vice versa.[10]

    .
     
  13. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    The United States of America was the first nation on the planet that was born out of the idea that people had the capacity to totally govern themselves. The political philosophies of
    Locke, Rousseau, and Montesquieu become the great American experiment. The notion that the political ideologies which suggest natural rights surpass the divine right of Kings was as radical as it could get in the 17th century. (Please note that the U.S. with all of its aspiring ideologies has not been without fault. There was and still is discrimination here, and although we have not attained the aspiration of 'We The People' the nation has struggled to move in that direction, much blood has been shed in that vein.)
    Another subject that differentiates The United States from other nations are the people who live here. We are a nation of people who at one point or another came from another nation. Often referred to as a nation of immigrants, the U.S. is far more ethnically diverse than most other nations. I think that the complexity of America's diversity has created a very unique perspective on its culture. For example, if they choose people can celebrate ethnic festivals such as St. Patrick's Day, Cinco de Mayo, Chinese New Year and need not be Irish, Mexican or Chinese to do so. On the other hand, regardless of where their heritage originates, most folks do recognize and my experience has been that many celebrate the 4th of July. That mindset is purely American.
     
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  14. omya

    omya BANNED BANNED

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    burger for Rs. 35 in macd not for 5usd like in the usa
     
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  15. m2monty

    m2monty Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    Indians in India don't earn in $ US but in Rs.INR
    $ 1.50 = Rs. 100
    enough for a day when McD Burger available in Rs. 35.
    McD is US Brand.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2014
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