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The FOMC Decision And Tackling Leprosy

China, Company Strategy, Economics, Environment, India
By John Richardson on 19-Sep-2013



                  Ben Bernanke


Please note that before reading what follows: We do not want to be seen as belittling or ignoring the enormous efforts of those chemicals companies individuals, including those in India, who already contributing to long-term, sustainable growth.  We recognise their tremendous contribution and we would love to hear from those companies and individuals so we can highlight, and applaud, what they are doing.

But we continue to worry that the irresponsible action of central banks, including the Fed, have papered over the cracks in growth models for too long. Many chemicals company executives who think about the long term health of their companies, both economically and socially have, of course, for a long time got this. But are they in the majority?


By John Richardson

The FOMC’s surprising decision not to taper bond buying any time very soon has no doubt led to champagne-cork popping by the hedgehogs.

And, of course, Asian emerging market equities, bonds and currencies will rally today. This  will lead to a reaffirmation of the belief that if fundamental, deep-rooted economic, social, environment and political problems are swept under the carpet for long enough, they might somehow, magically, disappear.

But for Sandeep Gupta, however, and billions of other people in the emerging world, nothing has changed.

“Sandeep Gupta fidgets nervously in a Mumbai clinic while waiting to learn if the white patches and boils that appeared on his elbow a month ago are signs of leprosy – the disease that disfigured his cousin and maimed millions of people in India and elsewhere for 8,000 years,” wrote Bloomberg in this article.

“The lesions on the 12-year-old’s arm are a sign of leprosy, which, left untreated, can cause disfigurement and nerve damage.

“While leprosy, described in Indian texts from the 6th century BC, has been cleared from the developed world, it’s regaining ground in India, which has become the biggest source of cases imported into the UK and Australia.”

India’s 850 self-settled communities of leprosy sufferers are sometimes located in the shadows of technology parks and gleaming towers, Bloomberg added.

“I tell politicians, if you want to demonstrate India’s progress, you can’t afford to have a disease like leprosy,” SK Noordeen told the wire service. Mr Noorden led the World Health Organisation’s global leprosy elimination programme from 1984 to 1999 and now advises the Indian government on the disease.