ìIndiaís Stocks Shudder, With a Wide Impact: Emerging-Markets Indexes Fall to Year Lows on Election Results, Interest Rates and Middle East,î by Craig Karmin, Wall Street Journal, 18 May, p. C1.
This was the breaking news of the day, in large part because of what the worldís markets did yesterday to Indiaís credit ratings. This is Thomas Friedmanís ìelectronic herdî in action, saying in effect, ìIs this the best you can do, Congress Party?î
No offense, but this would be like asking Maria Shriver to be President because sheís the least offensive Kennedy relative we could get our hands on. The Congress Party has completely run out the string if sheís the best theyíve got. Geez! Even the U.S. has a law about not letting foreign-born politicians assume the highest office in the land (so you can forget about Governor Terminator too, but not President Mel Gibson).
So Sonia did the smart thing today and said she would not accept the post. Expect further twists and turns within the Congress Party, but in the end, I think this ìupsetî is going to prove rather hollow. The big question will be how quickly the BJP eats humble pie in order to come back into power with the same focus on the rural poor that Chinaís ìfourth generationî leadership has wisely displayed since assuming power in Beijing.
Simply put, you can only integrate yourself with the global economy so fast. Or in other words, the train engine canít really go any faster than the caboose can keep up.