Monday, February 04, 2008

Online GD Topic 3

Good going on the GD preparation. I am happy to see good points on the second topic. Though you should not get complacent, because it was an easy topic. And I did not see anyone breaking ahead into the lead taking a strong surge

While I put my brains to work on the analysis, it is time for the new topic

"One superpower is better than two"

Discuss this in the confines of US being the superpower now and other such things.
This is a very balanced topic to have a good discussion. It is not a topic where you come in with previous opinions, like in the previous topic. This is where you think on the history and form opinion, give structure, put it across forcibly - all in a matter of minutes in a GD and in a competitive environment

So let us see the best in you come out. Let out the swords and the warcries



Blogger Bhavna said...

Be it the Past, Present or the Future, being in power is the most sensitive word in the World dictionary. History has seen US and USSR as the power blocs of the world. With the collapse of USSR, US gained power and has been the superpower since then.
1.Having two super powers leads to a situation of constant tension between the two nations and a fight to be on the top. This leads to a cloud of fear covering the world. The World Wars have been an evidence of the extent to which the human breed can go to stay in power and to supress other nations. Be it the Pearl Harbour or the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings, the game of Power has adverse effects.
2.However, on the positive side the constant competition also leads to great technological advancements as is seen by the space explorations the Sputnik,Explorer etc
3. When one country is a super power it dominates the other nations and forces it's opinions on them. US has always acted as the international policeman. Be it the nuclear policies or control on hazardous gases.
Also, as is seen it the current financial situation,the adage goes well " US sneezes ant the entire worls catches a cold".

3:02 AM, February 05, 2008  
Blogger Bhavna said...

Between..m new here and this is my frst GD!
To introduce myself ..m Bhavna and m working at TCS in New Delhi.
Really appreciate the huge effort put by you!! It's a great help!

3:34 AM, February 05, 2008  
Anonymous Utsav said...

History has shown us the rise and fall of the "super powers"
The USA is percieved as the sole superpower now. But there was a time the world has seen 2 possibly 3 glogal superpowers. Superpowers in terms of their superiority in terms of economy, militarily and its desire to be a "big brother"
Countries have historically desired to be a superpower.
howerever, such a "big brother" attitude is not welcomed by other nations.
1. having more than one superpower results in a power struggle to align the other countries to thier side egs: vietnam, korea.
2. it is said that every matter has an anti matter the same way, although the US is considered the only superpower country many a times you can see few coutries siding together to resist their status. eg: Venezuela, Iran and North Korea.
thus i believe that there can never be one superpower.
3. Having two or more influential parties results in mistrust. the same kind of misplaced competitveness which leads to wars. This is often termed as Mutually Assured Destruction, something that we all need to avoid.
4. Let us have a look at certain issues where 2 "superpowers" have been formed on certain issues:
the US and allies versus iran, korea and certain arab nations wrt nuclear energy and weapons
US and allies versus Venezuela, Iran, Libya wrt Oil crisis.

To sum up, i would say that unless a superpower does have the world's intrest in mind, then probably its a good thing. But such attitudes are rarely found and thus one need more than one to maintain balance.

6:46 AM, February 05, 2008  
Anonymous Sarge said...

sorry if my post seems unorganised...but i'm just getting the hang of posting my views...
see basically having 2 superpowers has both advantages and disadvantages...kinda like a double edged

disadvantages being.....

1)thr could be constant danger of war(each being suspicious of the othr)..leading to unnessary military

build up (deterrent) there by leading to wastage of scarce resources..

2)would be a source of tension for the rest of the countries....since each of the so called super power's

wouls resort to arm twist or rather use strong arm tactics to garner their alliance towards it....
would kinda lead to formation of power blocs...whr the countries stuck in between wld have to

some cases may lead to a condition whr one has to choose b\w the devil and the deep blue see...

3)the common man who just wants to earn his bread and make a living wld also we have seen in

many a case of is the common man who pays a heavy price for generally no fault of his...

4)unnecessary wastage of resources in case of research and innovation...due to split up...synergies go


5) could lead to a mad race to outdo the other power ..whereby the govermant or power is so focussed abt

this tht is forgets its citizens rights ...natural resources...etc

advantages of two
1)competition cld ensure tht each keeps research and innovations going...

2)probably act as a deterrent to the other in some cases of wrong doing...since other nations may collude

with the other power and attack it...

3)if the two superpowers are nt hostile the synergy between them colud bring huge benefits to all


this goes to say tht whether there are 2 superpowers or all depends on the powers...i.e if they

are hostile the world would suffer...if they are friendly would benefit

i also understand that its probably better to pick a side in the gd ....if this were a real gd wld

definitely pick having two is bettr than one(i know i've disgressed a bit...but yaar this is my first

post...newbie...i promise to work on it)


9:25 AM, February 05, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A superpower means a country which has its influence on the world. In the past, the world was divided into 2 superpowers- USA and USSR.But as time passed the world witnessed the rise of one over the other and US emerged as a superpower. I think having more than one superpower is better due to the following reasons :-

1. Poltically speaking, if there is only one superpower, that country will influence all the decisions in the world and function according to its owm whims and fancies. Hence, i think to keep a check and balance in the world, more than one superpower is neccessary.

2. Some in the group above have argued that if we have only one superpower, there will be no nuclear arms race and terrorism could be controlled, but as we have witnessed since the past century, after US emerging as the sole power, terrorism has increased. Countries like N.korea, Iraq, Afganistan are examples

3.If there is one superpower, and it collapses, all other economies across the world get badly affected, because of the dependency of all countries on one country. However, this impact can be mitigated, if we have more than one superpower.

4. For eg. When india got its independence, the world had 2 blocks- US and USSR. But we supported the Non Alliance movement, which comprised of various developing and underdeveloped countries. That was a step towards the creation of a third block- NAM.

5. Moreover, if we have 2 superpowers, there is a check on exploitation of developing and underdeveloped countries and they can get the best trade bargain.

6. Sustainence of one superpower is not possible in the long run. Today, the world is looking up to the emering economies, like Brazil, india, Russia, China as the next superpowers.

-- Sneh..

12:03 AM, February 07, 2008  
Blogger shubha said...

Well having spent most of my life in the post cold war era , i would not stand for "One superpower is better than two" , the balace of power is a fragile phenomenon , governed by multiple factors

1) The existence of one superpower leads to a natural monopoly wherin the leader becomes complacent to the point of becoming unabashedly cruel , as demonstrated by USA in Iraq .
More or less the US is fulfilling its personal ojectives ( the "Black Gold" ) in disguise.

2) Sooner or later the balance of power shall be tilted as shown by the strong emergence of China on the international front .

A collaborative approach to power has become necessary even for Uncle Sam.

This can be looked upon as a threat or can be used positively by building a strong and mutually profitable relationship , it would depend on good politics.

1:51 AM, February 07, 2008  
Blogger yash said...

most of us have put very valid points.but i would like to divert the topic on the impact of the 2 superpowers on neutral countries.

I would like to elucidate this fact with a an example

After US intelligence reports declared that iraq doesnt have the weopons of mass destruction,China and russia took the oppurtunity and clearly expressed their apprehensions against the war.
Mr putin went even to the extent to the first visit by a russian president in 20 years.

but india since already committed to US on nuclear deal had to go against russia and china at the cost of its foreign policy.

so neytral countries are at very difficult situation in 2 power regime.
(sorry if i am a bit too elaborative. i ll try to do a better job next time)
iraq being a opec country(oil producing)and russia being a very crucial part of india's energy pie.

9:41 PM, February 07, 2008  
Blogger yash said...

sorry some additions
i meant first visit to iraq in 20 years

and russia and iraq plays a very important part in indias energy requirement.

9:45 PM, February 07, 2008  
OpenID halfrebel said...

I'll bat at no. 5 or 6 this time, as per Gyanee's latest fundae :)

1) Economic angle: It doesn't really matter that how many superpowers are there because power is always a relative term. In a classical Capitalist economy, it doesn't really matter if you have one super-rich or two super-rich persons, as long as the general population is living a well to do middle-class life.

Hence, if most countries of Africa, south America and Asia are able to bring their complete population out poverty due to increased trade, It shouldn't really matter to the whole world whether trade happened mostly with one superpower or two superpowers.

2) Political angle : If multiple power centres look at each other with suspicion, It would be bad, but if a common platform for dialogue where multiple parties can argue and convince and each other, then it can be good for everybody.

After all, in a democracy, we never say that having one or two or more strong national leaders is bad for democracy. Why? because we all believe in the framework. Similarly, if such a framework is made possible for countries of the world, We might move towards a more stable world.

CONCLUSION: As a proverb says, "Power comes with a responsibility". Any nation with a super-power tag will have to bear a responsibility towards the world. In India, We've had great kings in the past like Ashoka, Akbar(one superpower), while the Aurangzeb and Shivaji at the same time (two superpowers) and today we know who's more respected and why.

One superpower or two, it doesn't matter as long as they behave sensibly. That's my conclusion.

-- Himanshu

10:01 PM, February 08, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having a super power is okay but this superpower shud ont boss over smaller developing countries and shud not act as an international policeman As the US has done it intefered with Vietnam,Iraq, & Afghanisthan but only caused damage and ravaged these countries.

having 2 superpowers is also beneficial as it leads to technological competition betwn the two

7:44 PM, February 19, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

a world can be considerer as a train..where the superpower is the engine..and the boggies are the different countries attached to is always better to have two engines attached to a drive it better..however as you all said that it may lead to chaos..but on the flip side it may also check the supremacy and dominance of one nation over others

as now is the case,that US economy is slowing hence the whole train is would definetely have been better if there would be a second engine taking us through

11:09 PM, February 21, 2008  
Blogger Gyan-ee said...


Very good points. Good to see that even after this being your firt GD, you have made a wide spectrum of points.
You needed to consolidate a little well though.

You have tried a good start. You had to streamline it a little bit. The big brother idea did not fit completely cleanly with your previous two statements.
Point 1 - very good
Point 2 - Brownie point for saying that the second superpower need not be a country, but can be a bunch of them
Point 3 - Not strong
Point 4 - Again you seem to have tapered off from the strong points made in the beginning.
The conclusion shud have dug a little deeper. Maybe some thoughts on, if it is possible to have world's interest.

Wastage of resources - Very god point
Power blocs and Arm twisting - Average
Common man - I personally dont like people putting across sentimental points, but not a bad point. But I think such points divert the discussions into mundane areas without anything concrete coming out. Note that this term has been used so mch by politicians, but they have ended up doing not too much
The Pros of two powers are not strong points, but good that you have tried to see the positives.
The rest of the points are good tries, but other forms of the points you have made earlier
Good try. Couple of suggestions
1. Streamline and be crisp.
2. Points that have, 'it depends' rarely earn points or respect of the group. It just makes a generic statement
3. Be careful with 'if' statements in general. E.g., Points like 'if Hitler was not power hungry, he would have been a good president' leads nowhere

point 2 - very good. The reason it is very good is because you are putting across facts to support your opinion. I may not agree with you but it is a good point
Superpower collapse and impact - Dont know what you mean by collapse? Economic? And isnt this an impact of globalization in general. The Asain crisis that did not have any superpowers still impacted the whole world.
There is a check on exploitation when there are two powers - Not sure if it is supported by facts. There were many colonial powers a couple of centuries ago and they exploitation was no less.
Sustenance - Very good point. Unfortunate that you did not expand further. That point was one way of breaking away from the center of the discussion and explore a little bit.
Good job on the whole.

One phrase communicates more than you can say in a whole paragraph. You used the phrase 'natural monopoly' and won many points.
In a discussion of 10-12 minutes, usage of right phrases gives one a chance to cut thru with solid inputs in small time.
I would have liked to see you talking a little about 'why' in point two. That would have made it a strong discussion point. Else it just stands out as an opinion. The group may agree with you, but you wont impress the panel.
Collaborative approach - Good point

Good dimension. Yes, a lttle crisper would have done good.

You have come at no. 6 and scored a few boundaries.
First point, excelent. You have broken away from the rest of the pack.
Second point, better still. I was about to make a comment to the group saying that there were no anologies and the group had stuck too strong to the countries.
With the conclusion, you take the GD. There is a small risk for you for using an if clause, but I would give it to you

Anonymous 1,
Short points, but they were fine

Anonymous 2,
I like anologies and I am happy to see one. Keep it a little crisper. And try to keep the anology onto something where the group can readily nod its head and it will do you good

My points will be posted in a while. I just came back from US last weekend and was bus putting myself back on track in every aspect and hence the delay. I will try and give more time to the GDs. Atleast, will try :)

5:09 AM, February 24, 2008  

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