Saturday, May 9, 2009
Understanding Capitalism Through Radio China International
By Manuwant Choudhary
In an Indian village there is no electricity and with no electricity you cannot watch TV or work on a computer so apart from tending one's garden and walking your dog ...all one can do is listen to the radio.
But in India the airwaves are mostly silent.
News is banned.
Only music is allowed on FM but on a hot summer how long can you tolerate a repeat of `Radio Mirchi' (Radio Chilli).
And there are no english songs.
So the next best option is to tune in to Nepal where independent FM chanels play great English love songs and even Hindi songs.
The radio jockeys are much better than ours and the listeners who call even better.
A girl sang impromtu a Hindi song on air and her voice was sweeter than Lata Mangeshkar.
Who says Nepal hates India? (maybe only prachanda and his warriors hate India)
Occasionally, you must smile at the callers and what names they have....one called up and gave his name as `Bandook Prasad' (Gun Prasad)
While another said his name was Adidas.
The jockey said, "By the way is your younger brother called Puma?"
Names in our region are either after Gods like Ram and Shyam or they are capitalist.
Like a labourer who worked on my farm died and left behind orhphans. One girl was called Amrika!!!
Prachanda himself is actually Pusp Kamal (a lotus flower).
Like the BJPs election symbol.
So when he blames India for all the mess in Nepal and that he wants to have a non-aligned Nepal, one wonders what he's talking about.
Nepal has lost its way thanks to its socialist and communist leaders.
Only an unknown Nepali bureucrat understood who is Nepal's biggest enemy.
A customs officer from Raxaul was told by this gentleman, "You know who is Nepal's biggest enemy? It is Dr. Manomohan Singh!)
Indian officer, "Why Manmohan Singh? He can't kill a fly."
Nepali officer, "Not that way. He killed us by liberalising India."
Remember those closed economy days when half of Bihar and lotts of Indian's would be in Nepal to shop for sarees `Made in Japan',
Or at Pashupatinath near Darjeeling...hundreds of people crossing the border with rubber slippers and umbrella's in their hands because thats what they allowed to smuggle legally.
And Nepal prospored.
While India became poor.
And finally India went bankrupt so Manmohan Singh was forced to liberalise India. (something the Swatantra Party championed)
One senior officer told me, "I remember those days when we would get a packet of pilot pens for our bosses and they would thank us profusely by slapping our backs."
Now nobody visits Nepal. Everything and more is available in India.
Nepal is poor and democratically communist.
And Prachanda prefers China to India although China prefers Gyanendra to the communists.
So subconsciously I tuned in to Radio China International.
And to my surprise an American economist Dr, John (former economic advisor to US presidents) was being interviewed.
And his explanation of the `Meltdown' was something I had not heard on BBC or CNN.
He said, "The US government got it all wrong when the Federal Reserves pumped in billions into Freddie Mac..the first bank that failed. It was a Tsunami of funds being given to one company."
"And when other better banks needed liquidity the Federal Reserves denied it to them leading to all of them failing. A Tsunami of failing banks... and this led to a Tsunami of failing corporates who could not get the money from the banks."
"Who is to blame for market failure? Well, markets are a network, just like electricty is a network. If electricity fails even if you try you may not be able to find the one culprit and one thing leads to another. Markets are governed by prices. Its a value that the seller wants to sell for and a buyer is willing to pay. But in this case the price was something the buyers were not willing to pay for. So with no buyers there cannot be a seller and hence no market."
The Dr. goes on, "Its not a failure of capitalism but a failure of governnance, a failure of the Federal Reserve who did not see the real problem and pumped in money into Freddie Mac in order to reduce inflation."
"What should have been done is ignore Freddie Mac and other failed big banks and support fully the good smaller banks."
"And now there is a Tsunami of funds. They call it `stimulus'. But the funds are again going to failed banks and not into infrastructure development. So I give China 8 on 10 and The USA only 6 on 10 on how they are helping save the economy."
Forget Obama, anyone who understands basic economics will know that jobs need to be created, not just saved.
America Is Just Saving Jobs. (Or trying to)