Why India cannot produce a Barack
I was going the latest issue of Time Asia (1st December 2008).
It had a small flashback snippet on Barack Obama. Obama had just created history, he had become the first black man to become the Head of Harvard Law review. The article noted that Obama, had the intention to run for the office even back then. Wow ! found that ambitious.
Now lets see, can Indian produce a Barack ? can it ? nope. plain and simple nyet.
its not a pessimistic outlook of the political scenario in India. Its just there exists a system, which is so well run so as to turn out not leaders, but people who have been leaders. what I mean is, unlike the US where the people choose a leader, who then chooses his team, India is a democracy which chooses a team which then chooses a leader. Of course, things are changing. but the selection of the leaders at all levels is by the parties. Not by the person himself.
And here lies the first problem. When Barack wanted to contest the election, he ran for his parties nomination. he fought a tough battle against Hilary and won. I don’t remember either the BJP or the Congress asking the voters who they would like to see as their leader. A leader is chosen by the party as the most “salable” face and the people are to vote for him. This system obviously has flaws. The first being tha
t a new leader, with a good enough impact on the vote bank would need to impress the top brass of a political party and then only will he be able to get their blessing to contest election. the other option being for such a person is to contest elections on his own. thus creating another destructive and chaotic political scenario, the multi-party democracy. ( why destructive and chaotic will be discussed in another blog post). This path had been taken by our very beloved Raj thackerey and a host of south indian actors. ( Actors have joined main parties also, but they always tend to play a second fiddle role. None like Ronald Reagon, who became no. 40)
So suppose I want to contest election, what is the first thing I have to do? contest as an Independent. or join a party and run election on their ticket. let me take the second path. when I run for election and I seek to join say the BJP. (note: i am pro BJP, “only” because the congress has this nonsense of the dynasty. This evil alone makes BJP the best party ever, all BJP evils apart) Now, in a party I am in a line, where there are hundred of people above me in the hieirarchy who say, son, wait, I am before you to become the leader of this great nation. something Barack would have had to hear from Hilary, had the US had a system similar to India. So can India have a Barack ? nope because there is a long line of self absorbed (and sometimes talented) people above me.
What if I plan to run as independent ? without any political backing ? here again lies the problem. as an independent, I can only at best win and retain one lok sabha seat. and I need more than that to rule this country. an independent can simply play no more than being a sidekick of the sidekick of a sidekick’s role in this great tamasha. In the US however you may directly run for the president without either being an elephant or a donkey. Ross perot is the most famous example that come to mind.
So logistically as you can see it is not possible for India to have a leader like Barack.