Warning: This article may contain jargon, so deal with it. Remember, you were warned.
Disclaimer: Mockery towards a political party or entity does not mean support for its immediate opponent(s).
I briefly mentioned in my previous post how adept we Indians are at the blame-game. I’m going to focus on one of the blame-games that we play: Ask any man why the economy is in dire straits, and (the odds are pretty high) he’ll say it’s because of the ruling Congress party. “They screwed it up bro, I’m going to vote for BJP next time”, is what you’ll hear. Ask people from the Congress party (Many thanks to Arnab Goswami there) and they will say the holy words ‘external factors’ or simply ‘back-blame’ Indians’ undying penchant for buying gold. Are these really the correct reasons? In this post I will focus on answering this question.
I’m sure there are two questions, broadly, that remain ambiguous in our minds: (1) Why should we not buy gold? (2) What are these external factors that are affecting us so? You’re right. In a free market economy, we should be allowed to buy whatever we want, no? And apart from that, we have a right to know what these holy external factors are, don’t we? Continue reading
“Raghuram Rajan is joining the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to be the next Governor”, I told my friend, as I casually pointed to Rajan’s book, Fault Lines. Furrowing his eyebrows, looking quite puzzled, he asked me why that MTV Roadies guy is joining the RBI! Humorous? This is because each day as we get our morning newspaper, we shove away the main sheets and read up all the gossip on Page 3, to see where last night’s biggest party has been at, and which celebrity recently got a manicure. If he would have simply glanced at the inner pages, which have been littered with news about the change of guard at the RBI, he would know that the Chicago economist does not share that much in common, except his first name, with the immensely talented MTV host.
To say that the Indian economy is not in a crisis situation is excessively optimistic. We are exactly at that stage wherein most economists like to use the catch phrase ‘at the brink of a crisis’. I am actually beginning to think that if there ever was a blame-game competition, we Indians would emerge the undisputed winners. Ask anyone – ranging from an auto-rickshaw driver to an educated working professional – to state a reason for the current situation and you’ll get an answer, and a pretty convincing one as well. The common man and the media would blame the government, the government would blame the opposition and the external situation, the external sector blames the Indian political setup and the ruling party, and the patriotic Indian would say the Rupee was falling so drastically because we’re drinking more Coca-Cola and lesser Nimbu Paani! Um… No. Continue reading