Kristoff Asks, "Is Islam the Problem?" Business, Jobs, and GDP
On Saturday of this week, Nicholas Kristoff (NY Times Columnist) asked a question that has been on the minds of many people throughout the world, is the religious devotion to Islam a reason for the issues currently plaguing many of its countries, http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/06/opinion/06kristof.html.
This is obviously a tricky question, and one that can't be measured definitely, however, some of his points are interesting to explore.
In a business sense, to end a tie or partnership with a company because of the death of the companies leader doesn't seem prudent, especially when weighing the fact that the rest of the world is already practicing such methods.
In another business (job) perspective, I think of Iran and I'm saddened at the fact that the best jobs go to those who pledge allegiance to the ruling party. If you disagree with Ahmadinejad, good luck trying to find that job which will supply yourself and your family the comfort you desire. As a huge film of cinema (and jobs within the sector), I think its sad that any film maker who wants to explore any issues regarding the happenings of their country can be thrown in jail for voicing their opinions on local soil (or face prison upon return, if sentiment was voiced outside of country). The same type of situation obviously also applies to many other corrupt countries throughout the region. This is also, in no means to say that my government is a bunch of wonderful angels, they aren't. But transparency is displayed in most aspects and fundamentalist religious beliefs are not pushed onto others, nor are political beliefs for that matter (in very strict ways). Religious leaders within the middle east and some parts of western asia can also quickly fall into authoritarianism (in some people's mind), which is always a slippery slope to control.
I think the model I look towards for success, when thinking about Islam partnering with a governing party is Turkey, where secularism prevails for the most part while they're economy only becomes stronger, thus providing more jobs and and pleasurable lives for the young people looking to get ahead.
In this day and age when, regrettably or not, the western concept of globalizing the world is becoming successful for so many others (India and China with 9 percent GDP growth rates in a single year), its hard to see this system changing in the short term. I've also recently read (in the latest Economist) about how there are 15,000 hard line madrassas in Pakistan out of 20,000, each of these slowly adding fundamentalist idealogy into the mindsets of young people throughout the country. This is not to say that any country mentioned is wrong or right, this is just to gauge your thoughts on what the future SHOULD hold for these places, and what proper steps you think should be taken. I'd love to hear your opinions on what you all think...