It does not take Air Jordan Fusion 4 much to trigger a crisis in Pakistan. Whether Mr Zardari is seriously ill or not, the speculation has run the gamut of a heart attack to nervous breakdown and rumours of imminent resignation.
It is interesting that while in the media his health condition is seen as heart related, soft whispers speak of a mental collapse. This has been given credence by a US magazine report that while speaking to Obama, the President of Pakistan was incoherent.
The common perception is that Mr Zardari is a man of strong nerves, but we do know that his US doctors once thought he had dementia. At least this was the excuse given for his non appearance to Swiss courts delving into money laundering cases against him.
Whatever the truth, if he is indeed going through a health crisis, one can only wish him well. Political and media battles can be fought once he recovers. But if this entire drama is politics by other means, it would be interesting to speculate what he is seeking to achieve.
For one, it has allowed his son Bilawal to come centre stage. The picture of this 23 year old kid presiding over a PPP meeting that included grandees like Amin Fahim, political acrobats like Babar Air Jordan 18s Awan and the slippery Yusuf Raza Gilani, spoke volumes about our politics.
I have seen this young boy grow since he was one year old during the first PPP government and feel a certain soft spot for him. But to see him presiding over a major political force when he is barely out of college is as much a travesty of democracy as any draconian dictatorship.
This simple thought surprisingly never occurs to our political leaders. Most of them, with Nawaz Sharif leading the pack, say the right words for democracy yet keep pushing forward their kids into leadership positions. The latest to join the ranks of our future leaders being Maryam Nawaz Sharif, and good luck to her.
This is of course a hangover of our feudal past where devotion is not to ideas but to a particular family or house. A reflection of this is that a much higher value is placed in our society on loyalty even if a political entity and its leaders are riddled with corruption and ineptitude.
The followers ignore either because their self interest is involved or are not allowed to ask where the huge wealth of their leaders and their families comes from. It is not enough to declare properties abroad as the Sharifs claim or Zardari may have done though we don’t know for sure if all has been revealed but also to explain where did the money come from to start these businesses or buy these billion rupee flats, houses and chateaus.
This culture of blind obedience, almost feudal fealty, in our political landscape will never create the kind of accountability within parties that a true democracy needs. It is this reason that political leaders care little for their followers and even less for the notoriety that their acquisitive behaviour generates.
It has led to a huge revulsion among the ordinary people not directly involved in politics. It has happened in India with the Anna Hazare phenomena and without a doubt has contributed hugely to Imran Khan’s rise in politics. People are just sick and tired of the state being robbed and will not put up with it any longer.
And this leads one into why the current government has faced crisis after crisis since it took over. Again, the easy explanation is that Mr Zardari started his tenure with a baggage of perceptual corruption and has done nothing during the last four years to change it.
In fact, the PPP has gone a bit further and many new champions have emerged in its pantheon of corruption. A particular place of honour has been reserved by the prime minister and his family and others like Makhdoom Amin Fahim, and many others in the Sindh government are not far behind.
If these legends, and I have borrowed this term from cricket, had some performance to show to go with their avarice, people may still have tolerated them. But they continue to be a beautiful combination of corruption and incompetence. How long do they expect people to tolerate them?
Whether Zardari’s illness morphs into a crisis where everything comes tumbling down, or not, the fact is that the country has had enough of them. I do not always agree with what Mumtaz Bhutto says but there can be few caveats with his observation that if this lot continues for another year, we are doomed.
It is this collective belief, among the people and the media, that hypes every minor hiccup for the government into a major crisis. The patience for them has now worn thin, to the extent that even bad judicial decisions, not in fact but in law, are greeted with relief and anticipation. The military may be adding their silent voice to the popular angst but is in no position to force an extra constitutional change. All roads are thus leading to the courts.
It is thus that the judicial troubles of Zardari and company have come centre stage. There is hope among the people, though the exact judicial trajectory for this regime’s removal is unclear, that something will happen to see their end.
There is little doubt that the nation is now ready to go to the polls and exercise its choice to replace the current leadership. For once, very few are looking towards the military, and are hoping that change is possible within the democratic process. This is a contribution that Imran Khan has already made.
It is good that our Constitution was amended to include the necessity of a caretaker government to ensure free and fair election. The importance of this becomes visible every day because two of the leading contenders, the PPP and the PML N, are in government and fair election under their stewardship is not possible.
This Air Jordan 8s has been illustrated with an article in a leading newspaper yesterday that a former IG of Punjab and currently member of the Public Service Commission is heading Air Jordan 2010 a secret Special Branch cell to manage the elections for the PML N. A caretaker government would perhaps, and this is a hope, Air Jordan 7s get rid of these absurdities.
I don’t think that Mr Zardari would resign and the prime minister will squeeze every second to remain in office. Thus, in the normal course, elections are still a year or more away. But the nation has had it. The sooner elections come about, the better.