When I was in school, I came across this old Soviet joke:
When Kruschev was deposed and Brezhnev became General Secretary, Kruschev hands Brezhnev three letters in envelopes marked 1,2 and 3. He says, “When the first crisis hits, open the first letter. When the second crisis hits, open the second letter…”
In time, the first crisis hits. Brezhnev remembers the letters that have been lying unopened in his desk drawer. He opens the first one. It says simply: “Blame America.”
He blames the crisis on America and survives the crisis.
The second crisis hits, and remembering once again the letters, he opens the second one.
It says, “Blame me.”
He blames the crisis on the policies started by Kruschev. He survives the crisis.
In time a third crisis hits. He opens the third letter.
It says, “Write three letters.”
Watching the finance minister yesterday on TV, I was reminded of this old joke. He started the currency crisis by blaming America: the Fed’s tapering, foreign investors pulling out, etc.
Yesterday he blamed the policies pursued by his predecessor Mr Pranab Mukherjee between 2009 and 2011 as the reason for the crisis. We have reached the second letter.
At what stage do we reach the third letter, I wonder.