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THE TWIN DANGERS TO THE GLOBAL ECONOMY

I never had any great opinion about the Pakistani army, the ISI and its dirty tricks department. I have no doubts in my mind that the Pakistani establishment had a hand in the assassination of Ms. Bhutto. Essentially, democracy meant adjusting to diverse pulls and pressures. Perhaps it could even find a solution to the vexed Kashmir issue. But if Kashmir issue were to be solved, surely, it would have diminished the very importance of Pak army. Crucially, such a scenario would have questioned the very existence of Pakistan as a nation. Hence the constant attempt by the Pakistani establishment to spread hate against India.

But to sustain that hate, Pakistani establishment had to join hands with Islamic terrorist forces. Else it would have run out of steam. And in the process Pakistan instead of using global terror networks against India, got sucked into the vortex and soon became the “epicentre” of terrorism. In fact, the latest edition of the Economist states, “The war against Islamist extremism and the terrorism it spawns is being fought on many fronts. But it may well be in Pakistan that it is won or lost. It is not only that the country’s lawless frontier lands provide a refuge for al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden, and that its jihad academies train suicide-bombers with global reach.” Naturally such a scenario and the recent developments worried me. I rushed to my friend Chetan, the expert virtually on anything and everything.

“Chetan is this not a danger to the global economy?” I literally yelled at him as I barged into his office waving the latest issue of Economist. He was unmoved. After some persuasion Chetan answered, “Yes they are a state within a state. They are completely autonomous that even their government dare not interfere in their functioning. They have so much autonomy that they can even print currencies. Their ownership is a complete secret.” “Ownership!” I once again screamed not getting the import of what Chetan had stated in the very end. “What has ownership issues got to do with the Pakistani Army?” Chetan was amused. Laughingly he said, “Narada, I was referring to the US Federal Reserve, not the Pak army.” “The US Federal Reserve ..” I gasped for my breath. Chetan seized this opportunity and went ballistic. “Narada, understand that the US Fed is neither public nor a private body. It functions through representation from 12 regional reserve banks. And most of them being unlisted are not required to declare their shareholding, which remains a complete secret. Further, in the name of autonomy, under the US law, every Fed member has a 14-year term, while the US President has mere a 4-year term, and the Congress member just a 2-year, term.” My head was in a heady spin by this time. The very suggestion the ownership of the US Federal Reserve was a secret was as indeed well and truly appalling. I recalled vaguely how unconfirmed global reports pointed out to the fact that US Fed was indirectly owned and controlled by the well-known global investment and merchant bankers. “But what are you implying, Chetan?” I enquired. My patience was fast running out. “Narada, the fixation of US Fed in controlling inflation and consequently lowering interest rates are legendary. Lower interest rates, as any student of economics would tell you encourages spending and discourages savings. In the process it has the calculated effect of controlling savings and ensuring its shift from the hands of households to the US corporates.” The final piece in the jigsaw puzzle – “70% of the fortune 500 companies are owned and controlled by these very bankers who are alleged to control the Fed. Hence the ownership of Fed is a real issue.” Chetan concluded. Is that what they call cowboy capitalism? Is it not that the Fed system designed to allow concentration of wealth? Is this not the biggest challenge to global economy and evolution of a civil society? From what he stated, one thing was certain – Islamic terrorism was as dangerous as cowboy capitalism; Pakistani army as dangerous as the US Fed system. The only difference: Islamic terrorism is despised, Fed is respected. It is time we address the dangers posed by these two. But the moot question: Who will bell the cat?

 

Last modified on Sunday, 07 July 2013 07:36

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