Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Obama and the American Dream...

What has been described by many in the media as a wrong move by Obama when he announced his premature withdrawal of troops from Iraq is actually a move that blatantly clarifies American policies and its vested interests. Let me highlight the points to be kept in mind before analysing further this audacious move:
  1. The November 2010 elections are crucial for the Democrats to retain their stronghold over the Congress, Senate and Gubernatorial positions. Around 30 Senate seats are up for grabs, with no seat “safe” in light of the recent win of Mr. Scott Brown from the MA Senate seat that was held by the late Ted Kennedy for a long time. With the Republican Party surging ahead in many polls, it is a tough task for the Democrat contenders to retain their seats.
  2.  President Obama was elected on certain promises, one of which was of withdrawal of troops before October, 2010. By sticking to his promise, he would be able to build on the goodwill and improve his steadily-declining popularity ratings (one of his lowest ever).

3)    The move was not a sudden move – it has been emphasized since the start of his term that he would be removing all American Military presence out of Iraq by 2010. It was a neatly built-up idea that is now being translated into a reality (Inception, anyone?)
Now we have to keep in mind that in the long term, this move is a testimony to what everyone has believed about the Americans – that each step they take in the name of Democracy is totally cloaked in self-interests. Surely, Iraq might not have been a Democracy before the American troops arrived, but it was at least not in shambles as it is now. And who will be responsible for rebuilding the country’s infrastructure? Well, American Firms themselves !!!
Are we not living a lie here? Is this how the cycle of growth and development should flow? American military firms need to keep running – so they use the military to bomb other countries on the pretext of Democracy (and these firms gain by supplying them the weapons used for this “mass destruction”). Then swoop – come in another set of Americans who call themselves the good guys. They help rebuild what the military has just destroyed. Hey let’s not forget the humanitarian aid that the various “American” firms send over to this country, all paid by American citizens who are “devastated” by this war.
Thanks to this, American firms become stronger and richer, and they use this power spread to other nations, employing thousands of young people who are now totally dependent on the well-being of the American economy. I do agree that the world is inter-linked, and that America, as a World Power, has spread its influence far and wide. But does it mean we should keep depending on their resources and money for each and everything concerning our lives? Well the beauty of it is, we don’t have to. But our own Government makes us so lazy that we end up depending on such firms.  Our economy might have opened up in 1991, but the minds of the politicians remain closed. It is very touch for any local firm to compete on a global stage, and the Govt. Doesn’t make it any easier. Yes, the SOPs given to some sectors are laudable, but what about the areas that do need attention? What about encouraging budding entrepreneurs instead of churning out service class for filling up more American firms? Isn’t it unfair that we live mediocre lives while our counterparts in developed nations live lavish lives, just because they happen to be living in America?
I am not trying to spread Amerophobia among you more than the Indophobia and Chinophobia that America has spread among its citizens. Although I am in favour of the increase in Visa Fees (for reasons that I shall elaborate in another post), the rhetoric used in this regard, by a man considered the most powerful man in the World, is appalling to say the least. There is also a proposed legislation against firms that do not employ more than 50% of Americans in their payrolls. This cycle will continue to escalate.
Democracy, as a concept, is not viable everywhere, and more than the Americans it is the rest of the world that needs to realize that. China, with its pseudo-democratic systems, has risen far more than any other developing economy and is growth story is the envy of every major and minor developing nation. But even it is dependent on exports (40% of its GDP), mainly to Europe and America. But even China has realized that it needs to step up domestic consumption in order to sustain its growth, and depend less on foreign economic imbalances.
I hope our leaders are making wise choices for the good of our country, and not just looking at any upcoming by-election. The increase in prices of Oil and Gas are the first steps that our Govt. is taking to reduce our dependence external powers by balancing our accounts and reducing debt. Hope things move on in the same way, to make the Indian dream come true.

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