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Article: Narendra Modi and Donald Trump: High office demystified
When politics changes, so must political punditry. This seems obvious. But it’s not, for many pundits in many countries. Thus the continuing flood of ‘oh-my-god’ variety of commentaries and analyses on leaders like Narendra Modi and Donald Trump. Modi and Trump are mouldbreaking leaders, and not just because of their spectacular electoral performances, in Modi’s case, more than once.
In different ways, India’s Prime Minister and the US’ President are not tied up by often-stultifyingconventions of high office. Modi is disciplined, extraordinarily so, and Trump’s working style often seems chaotic. Look, though, at Modi’s radical, unconventional and successful messaging on demonetisation and Trump’s so-called ‘un-presidential’ interventions.
Modi, unlike any Indian PM, identified himself squarely with a un-populist policy and directly asked voters to trust him — and they did. Trump, while being ‘un-presidential’, has retained all the support of his base and made his priorities clear. They are leaders who can create a persona and build credibility independent of their office.
Pundits need to understand this while analysing such mould-breakers.
American pundits in particular seem to have a hard time comprehending that Trump is a president like no other. Low-income Americans, many of whom voted for and support Trump, on the other hand, have no problem grasping that the president can function as if he doesn’t need the office of presidency. And some of America’s richest people, people who have no need for political patronage or presidential favours, have also seen in Trump a president whose biggest asset is his ability and willingness to step outside the binaries of White House. Perhaps middles-class mores — the cultural/intellectual background of most pundits — are too wound up in the status quo and the poor and the rich are more receptive, for different reasons, to mould-breaking politics.
The larger point is about demystifying institutions. Modi has brought the office of prime ministership closer to voters, thanks to direct, unfiltered modes of communications. Trump, by casting aside many behavioural traditions of presidency and through his unfiltered personal tweets, is doing something similar. Modi is undoubtedly the more politically sophisticated of the two. But both are changing politics even as they practice it.
1. Demystified (verb) (रहस्य हटाना): Demystify is to make something easier to understand.
Synonym: Debunk, disparage, mock, puncture
Antonym: Flatter, praise, prove, uphold
Sentence: The scientists are working hard to demystify Cancer and its causes.
2. Pundits (adjective) (विशेषज्ञ): A Pundit is a person who is a supposed expert and imparts deep knowledge to the more ignorant folks.
Synonym: Bluff, cognoscenti, expert, intellectual
Antonym: Ignoramus, amateur
Sentence: He is known to be a pundit of economic predictions.
3. Stultifying (verb) (मूर्ख बनाना): Stultify is to cause to appear or to be stupid, foolish or absurdly illogical.
Synonym: Ridicule, mock, negate, stifle
Antonym: Excite, Encourage, assist, aid
Sentence: The audience was stultified by his monotone speech.
4. Patronage (noun) (आश्रय): Patronage refers to the support given by an organization by someone.
Synonym: Aegis, auspices, backing, sponsorship
Antonym: Attack, blockage, disapproval, hindrance
Sentence: The selected candidates should be selected on the basis of merit rather than any political patronage.
5. Mores (noun) (रीति-रिवाज): Mores are often defined as customs, norms and behaviors that are acceptable to a society or social group.
Synonym: Codes, etiquette, formalities, morals
Antonym: Bad manners, fad, familiarity, indiscretion
Sentence: The age-old and traditional mores should be changed progressively with time.
6. Mould-breaking (adjective) (ढालना-टूटना): Mould-breaking refers to something which is characterized by bold originality or pioneering in nature.
Synonym: Innovative, creative, disruptive, seminal
Antonym: Paradigm, prototype, template, normal
Sentence: Vidya Balan is known to be a controversial and mould-breaking actress.
7. Chaotic (adjective) (अस्त-व्यस्त): Chaotic refers to be in a state of complete disorder and confusion.
Synonym: Anarchic, helter-skelter, tumultuous, turbulent
Antonym: Calm, harmonized, ordered, organized
Sentence: With Demonitisation, the entire banking and financial situation were chaotic.
8. Conventions (noun) (समझौता): Convention refers to a large meeting of people who come to a place usually several days to talk about their shared work.
Synonym: Conference, meeting, assemblage, clambake
Antonym: Disagreement, discord, strangeness, oddities
Sentence: The World peace convention was attended by several disciplinarians and world leaders.
9. Unconventional (adjective) (रुढ़िमुक्त): Unconventional is defined as someone who is not based or on conforming to what is generally done or believed.
Synonym: Atypical, bizarre, eccentric, idiosyncratic
Antonym: Common, ordinary, standard, usual
Sentence: His unconventional approach to life made him different from everybody else.
10.Interventions (noun) (हस्त-क्षेप): Intervention is an act of becoming involved intentionally in a difficult situation.
Synonym: Interference, mediation, arbitration, intercession
Antonym: Challenge, affront, provocation, stimulation
Sentence: A high degree of economical intervention is required to boost the sluggish economy.
Question (1-5): Answer the following as directed.
1. Find out the words which mean the same as ‘spectacular’ (प्रभावशाली)
Solution: Option (2)
Explanation: The given word is used to describe something which is very exciting to look at. So, from theabove-given options, option (2) is a right choice as the synonym of the word.
2. Find out the words which mean the same as ‘radical’ (स्वाभाविक)
Solution: Option (3)
Explanation: The given word is defined as something which is aspiring from or going to root or source. Hence, from the given options, option (3) is the correct choice as the synonym of the word.
3. Find out the words which mean the same as ‘persona’ (शख़्सियत)
Solution: Option (4)
Explanation: The given word refers to the aspect of someone’s character that is presented or perceived by others. So, from the given options, option (4) is an apt choice as the synonym of the word given in the options.
4. Find out the words which mean the same as ‘binaries’ (दोहरा)
Solution: Option (1)
Explanation: The given word refers toconsisting of or indicating or involving two. Hence,from the given options, option (1) is the right choice as the synonym of the word given in the options.
5. Find out the words which mean the same as ‘grasping’ (लोभी)
Solution: Option (3)
Explanation: The given word is often defined as to make an attempt to seize or hold.Therefore, from all the above options, option (3) is the right choice as the synonym of the word given in the options.
Word of the Day
Meaning (English) – is to make people have a particular feeling or make a situation start to exist.
Meaning (Hindi) – निकलना / उत्पन्न होना
Synonyms – Arouse, beget
Antonyms – Discourage, halt
Example – "Every cloud engenders not a storm" (Shakespeare).
उदाहरण – "हर बादल तूफान नहीं पैदा करता है" (शेक्सपियर)।