Archive for the ‘future’ Category

Mumbai Violence Clouds India’s Economic Future

November 29, 2008

The terrorist siege in southern Mumbai, not far from its financial district, is likely to threaten India’s already murky economic future and thwart plans to transform the city into a regional financial center, economists and investors said.
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By HEATHER TIMMONS and KEITH BRADSHER
The New York Times
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India’s economy had already been slowing significantly, because of the global credit crunch and the rupee’s decline. The country’s leading stock market index, the Sensex, has been cut in half since January as foreign investors redirected billions of dollars out of the country. Real estate markets around the country are cooling off.

Now foreign investors and business executives, who fueled much of India’s blistering growth over the past three years, are expected to be even more cautious about investing in India, at least in the short run, analysts said. Local companies and executives, who have already put the brakes on growth projections, could revise them further.

“Of course there will be some setbacks” related to the attacks, said Hitesh Kuvelkar, associate director at First Global, a financial research firm. Even before the attacks, First Global predicted that India’s economic growth could slow to about 6 percent in 2009 and less than 4 percent in 2010.

An Indian soldier holds positions outside the Taj Mahal hotel ...
An Indian soldier holds positions outside the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai. Indian commandos have killed the last remaining gunmen in Mumbai’s Taj hotel to end a devastating attack by Islamic militants on India’s financial capital that left 195 dead, including 26 foreigners.(AFP/Sajjad Hussain)

The attacks, which left more than 150 people dead by Friday evening, made targets of foreigners, witnesses said. The heavily armed terrorists were able to bypass security at two of India’s most expensive hotels, and it has taken India’s military several days to quell the violence, raising questions about safety in even the most exclusive locations.

It may be some time before the hotels, the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower and the Oberoi, once regular haunts for executives, become deal-making hubs again. “I would not feel comfortable either staying in or going to meetings at the Taj or the Oberoi, at least in the near future,” said Joel Perlman, the president of Copal Partners, a research company.

Read the rest:
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/29/world/asia/29impact.html?_r=1&hp

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The year 2025: Oil, dollar out; Russia, Islam in

November 21, 2008

Global warming could be a boon to Russia, a European country could be overrun by organized crime and the U.S. and its dollar could further decline in importance during the next two decades, says a U.S. intelligence report with predictions for the world in 2025.

The report, Global Trends 2025, is published every four years by the National Intelligence Council to give U.S. leaders insight into looming problems and opportunities.

The report says the warming earth will extend Russia and Canada‘s growing season and ease their access to northern oil fields, strengthening their economies. But Russia’s potential emergence as a world power may be clouded by lagging investment in its energy sector, persistent crime and government corruption, the report says.

By PAMELA HESS, Associated Press Writer

Analysts also warn that the same kind of organized crime plaguing Russia could eventually take over the government of an Eastern or Central European country. The report is silent on which one.

It also says countries in Africa and South Asia may find themselves unstable and ungoverned, as state regimes collapse or wither away under security problems and water and food shortages brought about by climate change and a population increase of 1.4 billion.

The potential for conflict will be greater in 2025 than it is now, as the world’s population competes for declining and shifting food, water and energy resources.

Despite a more precarious world situation, the report also says al-Qaida’s terrorist franchise could decay “sooner than people think.” It cites its growing unpopularity in the Muslim world, where it kills most of its victims.

“The prospect that al-Qaida will be among the small number of…

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081121/
ap_on_go_ot/intel_trends_4

Gates fends off questions on Pentagon future

November 14, 2008

With a smile and a no comment, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates fended off speculation Wednesday that president-elect Barack Obama may ask him to stay at the Pentagon.

It was the first question put to Gates at a media availability after he met here with Estonian Prime Minister Andrus Ansip: had he had any discussions with Obama or his representatives about the defense chief’s job?

AFP

Defense Secretary Robert Gates, seen here in October 2008 at ...
U.S. Secretary of Defense Bob Gates. 
(AFP/Getty Images/File/Logan Mock-Bunting)

Gates smiled mischievously and said: “I have nothing new to say on the subject.”

His future has been a subject of intense speculation since a top Obama foreign policy adviser, Richard Danzig, told reporters October 2 that Gates had been a good defense secretary and “would be a better one in an Obama administration.”

The Wall Street Journal, citing two unnamed advisers to the president-elect, said Tuesday that Obama was leaning toward asking Gates to stay on at the Pentagon for a least a year.

That would help smooth the transition at a time when the country is embroiled in two wars and faces potential challenges from Iran, North Korea and Russia.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20081112/pl_afp/uspolitics
obamagates_081112165952

Republican Sparring Starts Amid “Honesty About Eight Years of Failure”

November 11, 2008

By Adam Nagourney
The New York Times 

Above: Newt Gingrich, in New York on Monday, said Republicans should be honest “about the level of failure for the past eight years.” Photo: Todd Heisler/The New York Times
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The competition to fill the vacuum left by Senator John McCain’s defeat — and by the unpopularity of President Bush as he prepares to leave office — will be on full display at a Republican Governors Association meeting beginning Wednesday in Miami.
The session will showcase a roster of governors positioning themselves as leaders or future presidential candidates, including Sarah Palin of Alaska, Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, Charlie Crist of Florida, Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, Haley Barbour of Mississippi and Mark Sanford of South Carolina.

At the same time, Republicans representing diverse views about the party’s direction are preparing to fight for the chairmanship of the Republican National Committee

, a prominent post when the party is out of the White House. The current chairman, Mike Duncan, has signaled that he wants to stay on after his term expires in January, but he is facing challenges from leaders in Florida, Mississippi and South Carolina, among other states.
 

 

 

If McCain loses, what’s next for Palin?

November 1, 2008

Former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger — a Republican and supporter of John McCain — told national public radio yesterday that Alaska governor Sarah Palin is not prepared to take over the job of President if she had to. He said, “I devoutly hope that [she] would never be tested.”

But the fact is that if some people in the Republican Party get their way, she could be tested one day. Should John McCain lose the race for the White House, you can bet your last dollar this moose huntin’, gun totin’, pro-life hockey mom will not fade from the political spotlight. She’s a huge hit with a group of social conservatives who embrace her values and see her as a fresh face for a divided party… to them, a 2012 Palin run for President may be on the horizon.

Palin is a huge hit with social conservatives who would love to see her run in 2012. 
Palin is a huge hit with social conservatives who would love to see her run in 2012.

But a lot of other people feel quite differently. Sarah Palin quickly became a national joke for her lack of experience, failure to grasp the issues and inability to handle herself with the media — especially those awful interviews she did with Katie Couric. Recently she’s gone off script and off message on the campaign, angering several of McCain ’s campaign advisers. She’s been called everything from a “diva” to a “whack job,” and yet through it all she remains remarkably unphased.

In an interview this week on ABC’s 20-20, Palin said, “I’m not doin’ this for naught.” Yet another pithy utterance.

FROM CNN’s Jack Cafferty