I am free for a while this weekend and thinking about how our future could look like - from one of the perspectives which concern me - politics. This blog is just about that! Our news is cluttered with disputes, conflicts of interest prevalent everywhere around. This blog is not a summary of them, but how some of those could shape our future.
Politics In India
Our politics is more divided than ever before. We have not yet developed a culture to settle issues once for all ever in our national discourse and instead inculcated a habit to bury them down only to be rubbed upon later. There are plenty of issues which haunt us even now - be it internal security / divisive politics such as State Regionalism (shows up as state pride in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kashmir, Nagaland, etc), Factionalism (shows up as movements to break up states like Andhra Pradesh - Telangana split) or economic decision paralysis including a lack of will to de-nationalize government hold on airlines, banks, power generation, transport (railways), etc.
We already need a big shift like politics reflections, which was evident from the Anti Corruption movement of 2012 and the rise of Modi era afterwards. I think more political changes would happen as the time arises and the country would move closer together in terms of polity propelled by a fear of an external security threat or be driven by an immediate economic collapse. Our government is caught up in not-so-successful ideologies of socialism and does not see any reason to hold a capitalistic dream for billions whatsoever - on the contrary capitalism is seen as an anti-poor system in our country. We continue to spend our political energy on firefighting daily issues such as containing diseases, university protests, farmer protests, union protests, etc and appease certain groups rather than thinking of the country as a whole.
World Political Powers
The world has largely remained very fragmented - with western powers (EU, ANZ, NA) enjoyed a great deal of equality and being hugely successful in spreading the fruits of success to the prosperity of their masses which shows up in their distribution of wealth and spending power, purchasing parity. On the other hand, former powers of the world like the Middle East, China, India, Africa were denied their rightful stature and the actual power in these left-out regions are still in the hands of feudal, dictators and people who are not-so-west alike. Even though with time, growth has dragged in non-west regions, it did catch up under the shadow of peace.
China, for example, has outgrown it’s economic expectations and has recently started flexing its political-military influence. This may unnerve some western leaders so much so to have a potential push for escalation. Such movements in world polity can upset the global order, especially when all our prosperity has come after interconnection and interdependence. We would see India would be pulled into various military alliances and groups to encircle China. Time will tell what we choose in the best interest of our people - can any conflict help us for our long term prosperity!
Future Of Indian Politics
We already see a pattern with right-wing democratic parties in different countries aligning together - with Modi having more warmth with Trump, PM Abe of Japan than Hilary Clinton in his US official meetings. I think there will be a greater need and aspiration to control each other’s election outcomes than ever before. Previously, the US has been accused of going to extremes to have favourable governments at its disposal with favouring arguments on why it should be done - both for the greater good and for the good of the USA. Now even more countries would try to deploy means to fiddle with elections in democratic societies and would retort to protests/unrests such as Hong Kong, MENA, Xinjiang regions where power cannot be obtained by fiddling elections. This also puts us at a higher risk of having interference with elections and hence we would see more garbage throwing at foreign players than ever before - be in internal failures (in a very broad sense) or electoral defeats.
Future Of World Politics
Politics in the world would grow more towards anti-emerging powers specifically anti-china. West is feeling pressure with a Chinese giant in making and few giants such as India, Brics, Asean lined up to even eat up second and third spots. They cannot afford to lose their hard-earned significance in the politics of the world. We are certainly racing towards a conflict - a cold war-like situation. Smaller countries like Japan, Korea, ASEAN could be eaten up by China if it wants to test its pride or to have greater control over its trade routes or indebt even more countries to a level that they cannot speak up.
Framework For A Greater Good
I still believe, there would be sane voices who would have read enough literature on WWII and it’s aftermaths - Life in Germany, Japan and post-cold-war Russia and would be driven by its fear or by their genuine creativity and passion to pull the world ahead. It will be onto them to guide us to a safe zone - as popularly said in the game PubG. I think GandhiJi’s talisman is the best guide in this regard:
Whenever you are in doubt, or when the self becomes too much with you, apply the following test. Recall the face of the poorest and the weakest man [woman] whom you may have seen, and ask yourself, if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to him [her]. Will, he [she] gain anything by it? Will it restore him [her] to a control over his [her] own life and destiny? In other words, will it lead to swaraj [freedom] for the hungry and spiritually starving millions? Then you will find your doubts and your self melt away - Gandhi Ji’s talisman
politics india world