The Electronic Herd (Thomas Friedman):
- The global marketplace today is an Electronic Herd (aka global financial market players ) of often
anonymous stock, bond and currency traders and multinational investors, connected by screens
- It cuts no one slack, doesn’t recognize anyone’s unique circumstances. The herd knows only its
own rules and they are consistent. They are the rules of the Golden Straitjacket
- The operations of the herd will lead to a ‘revolution from beyond’ or what he calls ‘globalution’
- This would result in countries being forced to improve systems of governance, transparency,
free press, free markets, global standards and democracy.
- Linking the herd with globalization, suggests that it cannot be stopped without a huge cost to
society and its prospects of growth.
- Globalization and the effects of the herd are things that no one intentionally created.
- Developing countries live under the fear of a "no-confidence vote from the herd".
- The fact that this competition exists between these countries in order to produce the most
stable, inviting and attractive environments for the herd make them able to indirectly control
the economic policies of the governments.
- Friedman claims that all of the world leaders have now been reduced to governors, and their
main job is to entice the herd into investing in their states.
- Consists of two basic groups:
1. Sort-horn Cattle:
Include all those people involved in the buying and selling of stocks,
bonds and currencies around the world who can move their money
around on a very short-term basis
They are currency traders, major mutual and pension funds, hedge
funds, insurance companies, bank trading rooms and individual
2. Long-Horn Cattle
Multinationals – the General Electrics, the IBMs, the Intels, the Siemens