The world is going through a tough time with lot of potentially big issues that can destabilise the modern day society. The world is today integrated in a matter that did not exist so much even twenty years ago. The inter dependency of countries are intertwined through many channels – whether it is through import and export or through dependency of resources (both natural and human skills) or through political compulsions that trigger lot of funding across nations, the fact remains that we are all nodes of a huge interconnected network and we cannot build enough firewalls to insulate ourselves in times of disturbance and chaotic situations happening in some part of the network. I would tend to describe the entire world as a huge octopus with all countries being its tentacles, some big and some small; but if you prick any one of the tentacles, you will definitely feel the tremors and impact in all the other tentacles. Its as simple as that !
So, once we acknowledge the interdependency, we cannot ignore what is happening in a different part of the world with the thought that this will not effect me as a nation or as an individual. It is bound to touch us whether we like it or not.
Now comes the recent turbulent times which got triggered by the financial scams in the USA which even potentially led to the total collapse of the banking system of a lot of big countries. There might be so many reasons and analysis behind the collapse, but to me this was greed leading to corruption amongst big institutions. This has led to a situation where the world is yet to recover from the recession across the so called developed countries. But did that allow the smaller and developing countries to go through their predefined path of growth ? Don’t think so … As the growth rates inspite of being positive have come down. I know politicians will relate that to inflation, corruption, etc .. But the fact remains again that the growth rates are coming down.
The next big thing to me that has hit us is a real sense of people revolution facilitated by technology through social networks. Regimes that were thought to be untouchables came down like a pack of cards by simple pressure from the common people. Probably the era of the “people voice” has started in the modern era. The scales and the impact of this varied from country to country, from issue to issue. Even in my country I was really surprised by the spontaneity of the common people to come down heavily against corruption – the momentum might be hard to be maintained with the same pace it started with, but our beloved politicians just could not ignore the voices, which they had ignored for so many years in the past. Hence there was a flurry of parties trying to encash that by showing solidarity to the peoples voice, but when it came to the fact that people were targeting them as being the most corrupt, then their true nature came to the front, but that’s another story for future.
People have become so much frustrated with greed, corruption, some few people getting rich and the poor becoming poorer, that they have come up with amazing expressions in the streets of Delhi, Wall Street, London, etc. Again this is becoming a global phenomena that governments can hardly ignore.
This probably has now triggered the frustration of the people within the European Union that its very existence might be at stake. I am not an economic expert at all, but my common sense tells me that by simply taking austerity measures will not solve the problem. That can be a tactical move for a short term horizon, but you definitely need growth to remove the gloom hovering around Europe. And common people are not seeing any such measures being taken or being talked about …. And that has reflected in the election results in Greece and France. Spain, Portugal, Ireland are all under crisis and time will tell how the common people will voice their concerns.
People are relating this as return of socialism and communism and the end of capitalism. However I don’t look like that at all. To me, these incidents symbolises the frustration of the people which is shown by removing the current governments, does not matter what type they fall under. It is probably a coincidence that the current governments were more on the capitalist line, I am sure the same treatment would have been rolled out if they were socialist. The problem of economic inequality is a problem which will probably cause lot of headaches to the governments of various countries, unless they make a honest try to minimise that.
Net-net: the signals are ominous : the power of the people are growing and it will be foolish of anybody to ignore this.