Monday, September 15, 2008

Incurious Minds

A recent Vice-Presidential pick has been assailed for lack of foreign policy experience. I always wonder how people can be so incurious about the world outside the United States. People tend to generalize and stereotype everything beyond their hometown.

Mexico has a rich culture and a sophisticated economy in addition to the poor who try to illegally immigrate. China has huge backward swathes amongst the uber growth regions.

In these days of readily available news, why is it that people - even those aspiring for political office - can't be bothered to scan through the multitude of sources on the Internet to get familiar with people, news and culture around the world?

The important thing is to avoid a spotlight effect where a culture is only identified by its most popular or notorious trait. A holistic view - with both the pluses and minuses of a society, its problems, its opportunities, its social mores would make a leader more in command with dealing with that country. This feeble mind would love to have a leader who does his or her own reading rather than rely on the snippets offered to him by his advisers.

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