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Political and Cricket Shenanigans

I put in a rather long comment on this article in Livemint.

So, obviously I have to paste that comment on my blog and make a blog post out of it!

1) Who's that Duncan Fletcher guy pictured with Dhoni? Anyway, neither do I know nor do  I wish to know. I just wish people of India would stop making Gods out of silly young men that cricketers are. Even compared to the cricket that I grew up with, the days of Srikanth, Amarnath, Vengsarkar, Azhar, Sachin, Ganguly, Laxman, and Dravid, now the game is all too commercialized. Too much cricket, too much money, too many crores (and girls) dangling in front of talent-less young men.

2) What a fall when you consider that we started with "Yug-purush" such as Nehru to today's "half-purush" such as Rahul Gandhi and Manmohan Singh. Why did the people of India elect these jokers in 2004? And re-elect in 2009? But then again, what is the alternative before the billion poor of this country? No, Modi is certainly not who I want to see as the PM.

May be the poor electorate just vote for the guy who will give out the biggest dole and the Italian Gandhi knows that. Manmohan Singh is merely good as an economic bureaucrat — he should never have been the PM. He doesn't know the first thing about being a "mass" leader and democracies do demand mass leaders and oratory. Obama came out of NOWHERE and vaulted to the front of the Democratic Presidential candidates in 2008 just on the strength of his oratory skills.

Manmohan Singh feels he has done his job as long as he performs his file-clearing "duties" to the best of his abilities. And he saw enough of politics under Narasimha Rao and during the wilderness years of 1996 to 2004 to internalize that the name of the game in politics is to "survive." So he looks the other way as ministers under him run major scams — Raja, Maran, Jaiswal, etc.

Frankly, I think in time, the everyday criticisms will be forgotten and when the time comes to "define" his *legacy*, the big picture will talk about economic growth and so on. Just think of JFK's "legacy" or how a movie actor turned President Reagan has risen in stature so much that the Republicans might well be happy now to see his face carved into stone at Mt. Rushmore.

Same will happen with Obama. His historic win in 2008 has by now been more than forgotten and his administration is not able to do much (albeit due to the recalcitrance of the Republicans) and the talk has shifted to impeachment now. Cue Bill Clinton with all his triangulating about what constitutes $ex in the Monika Lewinsky affair. Now he is the biggest superstar in the Democratic firmament benefiting from the happenstance that the U.S. economy went through the greatest peacetime expansion in U.S. history.

George W. Bush remains reviled so far but my fear is this: in time, say by 2020, his "legacy" might transform and he might be "hailed" as a great "war-time" President who "led" America in a time of great "crisis" after the September 11, 2001 attacks.

So, public memory is famously fickle.

Anyways, talking about India. We are really caught between the devil and the deep sea. What does the electorate do in 2014? They should opt for a new and third alternative such as Arvind Kejriwal but then fighting elections in this country costs a bucket-full of cash. Who'll donate a 1,000 crores to the Aam Aadmi Party?

The Congress gets 2,000 crores per year from fraudulent businessmen. The BJP gets 1,000 crores from their bunch of businessmen friends. Obviously, this "donation" from businessmen to either party (or to Mayawati's BSP or Mulayam's SP or any of the other parties) does not come without strings attached. It's a "you help me, I help you" system. Politicians in power "help" the businessmen by facilitating stuff and by making sure that the long arm of the law does not catch up with our famously corrupt small businessmen who cheat on taxes of all sorts left, right, and center.

So, anyway, the BOTTOM-LINE is this: with a population of 1,250 million people and that is growing at the rate of 20 million additional new babies per year, we are truly and royally FCUKed.

So, hope we are all users of alcohol so that we may drown our worries in C2H5OH.

P.S.: I sure hope my recollection of college organic chemistry is right and C2H5OH stands for ethyl alcohol.



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