Janus’ Musings

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Insular?

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For people who have been looking at India for a long time can discern a noticeable change – the country is becoming insular – as long as we’re getting our latest mobile phones and LCD TVs, it doesn’t really matter where the rest of the world is going. This is also true in the US – they are very insular, really not caring about the World outside – there is the US and then there’s everybody else. Perhaps it is a sign of confidence of a country – we don’t need you guys anymore, we’re pretty much self-contained.

More importantly, the middle class and above have become disenchanted with politics and politicians. This is a worrying trend – political power has shifted to the rural population and we urbanites have accepted it and moved on.

Anand Giridhardas writing in the IHT talks about these changes:

The great fault line today is not between wealthy and poor, but between those still invested in this society and those who have effectively checked out.

The checked-out classes love to read feel-good stories. The newspapers oblige, burying news about flooding and hunger and millions of easily averted deaths, depriving India’s change agents of knowledge of what needs changing.

The comfortable follow politics the way others follow heavyweight boxing. Over Black Labels with soda and ice, they grumble about spectacles like the ideas-free parliamentary debate. But they rarely vote, rarely run for office themselves and rarely work to reverse things. The disinterest of the thinking classes frees politicians to play their game unsupervised, with the pesky duty every five years to gather the consent of the unlettered poor.

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Written by janusmusings

September 15, 2008 at 11:19 am

Posted in Asia, India

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