Idiot Mani Iyer's view of American Democracy

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Idiot Mani Iyer's view of American Democracy

Post by MulaiAzhagi on Sat Jul 21, 2012 11:48 pm

“Anything to drink?” Why not? So, “Champagne,” said I. “No champagne,” came the response. “A glass of white wine, perhaps.” “Sure,” she said, flinging a plastic cup of the most ghastly plonk at me, and a diet coke for the wife. There followed an unappetising plate of cold pasta (no choice, the lone item on the menu). Arriving in LA, it took nearly an hour for our luggage to surface. Where on earth was the famed excellence of the services industry in the private sector? Oh, Air India, why don’t you fly to the West Coast?

So, we took the train on the return journey from Los Angeles to Chicago. That’s 2,500 miles through six states—California, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Kansas, Illinois—and over 45 hours, about as long as from Thiruvananthapuram to Delhi. My first. To discover that the USA is not, as one had imagined, a congeries of similar-looking airports, but a land of the most amazing geographical diversity and social inequalities. For even as the train pulled out of Los Angeles, the underside of American prosperity came into view, ramshackle shacks housing the really poor and deprived, the railway track, home to the flotsam and jetsam of the unsuccessful, abandoned pick-ups in the backyard, junk and twisted scrap, not suburban gardens, to deck the environment, The Grapes of Wrath in reverse gear.

The journey began with unintelligible announcements in incomprehensible accents. “There even are places where English completely disappears/ In America, they haven’t spoken it for years!”: Prof Higgins in My Fair Lady. Fortunately, we have our daughter with us who, after eight years in America, serves as our interpreter. The staff are hospitable enough, but prone to behavioural excess, shouting aloud through the intercom, “Janet, party of two; Paul, party of one; Mani, party of three. Come down. Now.” in stentorian tones. No, “Please”, no “Mr”, no “Sir”, just stentorian commands. Democracy in America apparently means the right of the lower orders to be rude to their social superiors. This goes by the name of “customer care”.


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Re: Idiot Mani Iyer's view of American Democracy

Post by Merlot Daruwala on Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:25 am

Breasty beauty, are you disagreeing with IMI on the pathetic - even rude - service levels in the US of A?
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Re: Idiot Mani Iyer's view of American Democracy

Post by MaxEntropy_Man on Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:34 am

india needs its oprahs too.
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Re: Idiot Mani Iyer's view of American Democracy

Post by confuzzled dude on Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:57 am

> Democracy in America apparently means the right of the lower orders to be rude to their social superiors


Isn't this the gripe of many Trump supporters these days?

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Re: Idiot Mani Iyer's view of American Democracy

Post by Seva Lamberdar on Sat Dec 09, 2017 3:39 pm

confuzzled dude wrote:> Democracy in America apparently means the right of the lower orders to be rude to their social superiors


Isn't this the gripe of many Trump supporters these days?

Were you holding on to this post to respond one day (suddenly after 5 years) after someone like Trump became U.S. President?
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