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A Gordian Nought
The Brit media is going ballistic over the case of thieving MPs. And the poor Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, is left holding the dirt can. Newspaper editorials and rival politicians are demanding his neck. One editor wrote: "If Gordon Brown was a dog, he would have been put down by now." Yelp! Most leaders of nations face mainly one challenge today: handling the economic downturn and its ramifications. Brown, apart from that, is also struggling with the problem of his team members having forwarded the bills for their private gardening tools and kitchen utensils to the taxpayer. It’s more than likely he will go, it’s now a matter of time, and one feels sorry for him. In our country, not only do we pay for our netas’ entire cost of living, we also sponsor their khandaan’s financial security. And in some cases, for generations to come. And no one bats an eyelid. Brown must dearly wish he was born brown in colour, not name.
We got caught bang in the centre of the underground rail strike. The workers’ union was demanding, among other things, a guarantee of no layoffs policy. Clearly an unreasonable demand, especially in financially stressful times, where many orgs are busy trimming flab. Expectedly, the city came to a grinding halt. And who suffered the most? Yup, the aam aadmi, as always. However, what I found interesting is that the local media (print and electronic) paid little attention to the issue and continued to be obsessed with Brown’s travails and Ronaldo’s new pay cheque, even as the janta toiled to get to work. In that context, I found the London media to be a bit elitist. In similar circumstances, our desi media, especially the Hindi news channels, would have taken the union leader and the state CM to the cleaners. We often crib about our "sensational" media, but the truth is more often than not it does stand up for the common man.