With the present worldwide financial crises cracks are already beginning to emerge in the global solidarity on the lofty ideals of free and fair trade and on the basic WTO principles supporting a culture of globalisation underpinned by equal opportunity for all member states. Ironically, but not surprisingly, the first ones to have these withdrawal symptoms are none other than the original champions of the WTO regime and the very proponents of advocating this system as the essential gospel of righteous guidelines to global trade Most rich countries, notable amongst them being France, UK and Germany, are now exploiting the economic downturn as a pretext to demand that EU competition rules be relaxed so that favoured domestic industries (such as automobiles) can be subsidised. Also, for the EU as a whole, the agenda for the coming year includes backtracking on the original plan of accommodating genuine asylum seekers and making Europe more welcoming to skilled migrants from outside the union. In fact, different governments have now actively begun working on reframing more stringent immigration policies and prompting migrants or foreign workers to head back to their home countries. The case of the United States is no different. A closer look at the two candidates facing each other in the battle for the White House reveals that neither Barack Obama nor John McCain are likely to significantly change or improve upon George W. Bush's lack of enthusiasm about promoting free trade. The sticking point in the ill-fated Doha negotiations has been the issue of how special safeguard measures could be best employed to protect poor farmers when import volumes spike and prices fall. This issue has been regarded as being very important especially by India vis-a-vis their cotton industry, which has wrangled with tumultuous market fluctuations recently. For their part, both Obama and McCain in their own way have actually gone on record to support the existing US policies on domestic American markets. While outwardly saying the right things - "Subsidies are a mistake, no one claims them to be a fiscal conservative and they not only distort markets, but also destroy our ability to complete (McCain)", "We have got to cap subsidies and on large trade we do not intend to cordon off America from the world as Globalisation is here and Americans are not afraid to compete (Obama)" - in private they both continue to assure their supporters and donors that they will safeguard the interest of American farmers and will not allow them to be unnecessarily exposed to the risks of globalisation till such time that they themselves feel that they are ready to compete. Sadly, with the State of US now fast becoming rightful owners of major institutions covering finance, investment, banking, insurance, housing and real estate, such protectionist approach is likely to expand instead of being curtailed under their tenure, i.e. regardless of who wins. Back in July 2008 the failure of talks on Doha Round was being mainly attributed to governments' bureaucracies, system's red-tape and a few limited irritants, but never on the basic lack of will on the part of developed countries to reach a consensus. Rather, as recent as September 2008 when talks resumed between the seven main economies endeavouring to arrive at an agreement, the sense of urgency to conclude matters was quite visible as the ministers made good progress in resolving differences and even announced in their closing remarks that an agreement was likely to be reached as early as February/March 2009. Regrettably, this buoyancy seems to be ebbing away quicker than we thought and we see more and more countries going back to an era when the absence of depth in thinking could not make them see the logic that there can be no isolated clean pockets in a polluted sea - That there national good is essentially tied up with the larger global good. Liberalization cum globalisation happened for many reasons. Apart from the fact that often certain governments were simply trying to catch up with the real world, the underlying thrust came with the realisation by countries and their leaders that for their people/stakeholders to truly benefit from their governance it requires a global effort where everyone can have access to innovations, market developments and capital structural developments regardless of where they take place. In addition, global access and connectivity are what everyone's voters wanted and strived for. What the leading nations are now forgetting is that the WTO culture has had predominantly good consequences: by ensuring cross cultural access, households and businesses across the world have benefited and deregulation has contributed significantly to economic growth and poverty alleviation. The WTO culture may not have been the main cause of the rise in living standards over the last decade, but it has helped much more than it has harmed and backtracking on it at a time when it is needed the most will be a grave mistake