Saturday, July 19, 2014

Monday Musings 207 - Scrutiny

Monday Musings 206 - Scrutiny

Scrutiny as a tool for progress
It’s not even a month that the new dispensation at New Delhi has come under scrutiny. Its decision on rail fare hike and ensuing rollback and then the annual budget itself came under fire. It announced the death of their honeymoon. Alas the doomsday that was predicted by the absolute majority in the parliament leading to a decisive shift towards the right did not arrive. So who checked its arrival?
I guess scrutiny did that. There is intense scrutiny of everything that the government does by the opposition, or whatever is left of it at least, the judiciary, the executive, the free press and an ever buzzing hyperactive social media. Everyone knows that whatever they say or they don’t, will be deciphered, analyzed, decoded and split wide open – and that keeps them cautious, on their toes and vigilant.
Scrutiny is such a good thing; Organizations create their own structures of scrutiny. They create review mechanisms, dashboards, reports, MIS and the ever ubiquitous meetings to keep each other in check. There are some lower order objectives of doing all of the above – like bringing everyone on the same page, sharing information, giving updates on progress so on and so forth. However the larger order purpose of these meetings is keep everyone in check by putting each other under perpetual scrutiny. Actions get dissected, results get analyzed, decisions get scrutinized – so that the wayward are brought to their senses, the vagabonds are tied to sanity and the ship stays on its course.
Social structures have scrutiny in built into them. Families and cultures have scrutiny in built into them, again with the unstated purpose of regulating behavior. The wayward are not appreciated, excommunicated and in some extreme cases hunted down.  Organized religion thrives on scrutiny through the notion of sin and the right and wrong. One man’s God becomes another man’s Satan, and instead heavens opening up, it is hell that is let lose.
Even games have scrutiny for smooth play and sports have to be scrutinized by organized sporting bodies. Companies are scrutinized. Sectors are put under regulatory scrutiny. Professions are scrutinized through their associations.
The all pervasiveness of scrutiny might lead us to believe that left to himself, man, his vocations and his interests will only cause mayhem and chaos. Whatever comes out of the fruits of a man’s toil must be kept in the leash of some scrutiny or the other. So we have a whole bunch of scrutinizers as a separate profession in itself whose job is brings sanity in every scheme of things.
I keep thinking, however, who will scrutinize the scrutinizers – because scrutiny is such a good thing.

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