Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Next Superpower: The Dragon or the Elephant.....

Disclaimer: I am not a closet-communist nor a am I Chinese admirer- just to make things clear before hyper-jingoistic media and assorted intelligence agencies who might pick up an interest in me. One piece of advice-don’t waste your time.

The reason I am writing this post is because of the frequent laudatory headlines in the super-power obsessed media which state emphatically from all possible forums that India is a emerging super-power and just one step away from achieving it and China has a real competitor to it...

We have just had another series of Bomb blasts all over Mumbai and frankly i dont remember the last time I read in a newspaper or on the net or heard on the TV- that there was any kind of terror attacks in china- with the state - owned media, it might be true that the Chicoms might have micro-managed stuff, editing out unsavoury details, but i would find it incredibly surprising if they can cover up any terror attacks that easily in this connected world.

Unlike India - where we have started to accept as de-rigeur that our lives are never safe and if we step out of our homes, there is a very real possibility that we might not return.

Ok, Leave aside security. Lets talk about the Economy, stupid...(borrowing from the more famous Clinton.) There's a lot of stuff floating around the 'net about how China's growth is all a bubble about to burst any day. But frankly, they have survived the Global financial meltdown far better than critics give them credit for and they have built impressive infrastructure all over the country to show for it. The dragon woke up a long time ago and has been running ever since.

On the other hand, Indian economists have been boasting about having 8-percent growth over the last few years...up from the slow and steady Hindu rate of growth of 4%- we maintained over the past several decades. But stop and ask the man on the street and i am sure that he will say that comparitively he is worse off than before- ever since the robber-baron era began (in the late 90's) under the cover of liberalization of the economy. This is not true laissez-faire capitalism...this is CRONY Capitalism- like any that followed in any Banana Republic of central America.

The entire Indian growth story is based on either outsourcing contracts or shady financial transactions (for re-routing black money)- there is no credible manufacturing story here- to sustain the economy in the face of sudden capital flight.....Tirupur which used to be the tailoring capital of the world is now a ghost-town. If there comes a time, when the global financial markets demand : Show me the Money- I believe we would just show them a empty wallet. And the property market is so overheated all over India- its just a matter of time before a meltdown occurs.

And what about all those grandiose scientific successes we keep hearing about? The Chi-coms have just run a bullet rain at 300kmph speed. In India there's not a week which goes by without a train accident happening . And a minister who sulks at being appointed to the Railway (a minor) portfolio and refuses to visit accident sites? and we are planning to land a man on the moon? Dont make me laugh...let us first guarantee that every rail passenger survives his journey.

Finally Governance.....We boast about our much vaunted democracy and rule of the people- and daily we see how democracy fails us, due to men of straw occupying all the higher posts. we have a Prime Minister who is so desperate to survive in power - he sanctioned wholesale looting by his ministers. We have a heir-apparent Princeling who gads about the country speaking how much he hates nepotism and dynastism and not-at-all tongue-in-cheek..the poor sod actually believes he got where he is by merit?

and the less said about the principal opposition party the better. There is an incumbent PM-in-Waiting- who has been waiting so long to get it- that even if Yama were to appear before him- he would refuse to go without having sat on that chair at least for one day. And there entire policy is a mix of medieval obscurantism and mindless hatred of others- a sure recipe for disaster in this modern world.

I am not saying that China does not have corruption...but dont they publicly hang the corrupt over there? And when will we start doing it? that ought to put a little dent in the wholesale looting of the country

Finally, i would just like to add that even Pakistan, a nation that is 1/10th the size of India holds us in contempt and does pretty much what it pleases - while we go about the globe trying to drum up support for a seat on the Security council. Can any country try it with China? They do deserve that seat there, while India, until it puts its own house in order, does not.

And the biggest joke is we have named China as enemy-no.1...pleaase...they would beat us with their hands tied back...forget their superior conventional forces, all those upgraded military bases in Tibet and the long range missiles they have pointed at us...Can the Indian Prime Minster ever order a nuclear strike against a Chinese city (even as a counter strike- to follow up on a Chinese first strike?) I am sure that the Chinese would strike with impunity, given Indias' stupid no-first-use-policy (the weak posturing of a frightened kid) and then wait for the world, the US and Japan to tie up India's hands with diplomatic overture's. And we can be sure that our PM would demonstrate India's moral superiority by forgoing the nuclear option- even if millions of Indians die in a nuclear holocaust.

Should'nt there be a rule that every PM-in waiting be asked before swearing-in if he is comfortable with ordering a nuclear strike in the event of all-out -war?

These are just a sample of issues which go through my mind when I read stuff comparing about how the Elephant is catching up with the Dragon....Hell, you got a a long way to go you lumbering mammal......