Its like being an Indian leftist, whose either parents are in public sector or wife or brother or aspiring sons. Who truly beleives that market is bad. In all his earnest he plead to the state for providing for the poor, or open a NGO. Sometimes, in rage organize labor and prepare masses to revolt (incidentally organized labor is just 5 % in India, the left contribute to secure their interests and job security at the cost of 95% who are in unorganized sector)
My question is why is the left is against the market?
The answer to this won't be found in the 'ethical framework' but somewhere else.
I can only give you a hint ' look at the middle class composition (70 percent depend upon state either for salary, or subsidy, or protection', the NGOs, left intellectuals and we are part of this)
The whole debate on capitalism, imperialism which occupy indian intellectual minds...is coming fron a Country where the sequence of development had been State, then civil society and then market. Unlike the West (Origin of Marxist thoughts)that followed the sequence of State-market-civil society (that developed a critique of market excesses).
So, what is in the market...that is resisted? (read pranab bardhan on this)
Is it fear of competetion. The loss of the priviledges...
But what caste has got to do with it?
This has more to do with the 'ethics'. If you go beyond the caste data to the caste narratives, you will find three distinct yet dominant strands. i.e the Pride (in relation to other caste), Jealousy (if someone from caste deemed low comes in the neighborhood with a bigger Bunglow) and Fear (of society, of losing face, more pronounced at the time of marriage- the perpetuation link).
Now remove caste out of it, then what we have is Pride (as a relational concept) manifestating in a patron-client mindset, squeezing individuality out, seeking or dispensing favor rather than exercising 'citizenship'
Jealousy (inability to accept others as equal) manifesting itself in the form of 'lack of trust' giving rise to flea market economy...giving rise to moms and pop's stores rather that accumulated enterprises (I do accept that things are changing a little though a miniscule proportion among urban elites).
Fear (of losing face to 'invisible' yet formidable society) manifesting itself in the dearth of individuality and entrepreneurship, being overly path-dependent, just look at the dating system, how hard it is to win over a girl or boy by manifesting individuality, but so easy to find the partner for life by just conforming (I am not saying it's essentially bad though)
This is just a glimpse of how entrenched caste is, even extracting an ethical framework is not devoid of it. That leaves us to the question of what to do with it...atleast at the individual level. Can we jettison caste alltogether, I don't think its wise (more so when any attempt may reinforce it further). If I have to take a high moral ground, I will say that what we can and should do is to create a renewed vision for the society, a collective aspiration for the kind of society we would like to have now, the kind of society we want to live in – and indeed, the question of who 'we' are? When I pay bribe to get my work done or just speak in english to get past the guard, in essence I am legitimizing a system that indirectly perpetuate caste system. Why not instead of using 'connections' we exercise our 'citizenship'?
By having a vison it may be much easier to agree on the values that would characterize Indian society - such as equality diversity, solidarity, treating people by 'who they are', not by 'what they have' and so on –in this way we can harmonize conflicting claims much beter rather than raking the past and getting divided in camps of -for or against caste or reservations. Its time to recognize that a Brahmin is not a conspirator and neither does a Dalit incompetent. We as an individual are entwined within a system that dispense rent, to some more than the others.
The question remains 'whether we can ever have the courage to stop seeking rent? The irony is often we have more incentives rather than the courage.
'Individual insecurity' is yet another manifestation of the caste.