It has been a dramatic week, with the whole country waiting with bated breath, for the outcome of the governments response to the Supreme Court on the letter writing issue. It reminded me of the results of one general election in the last decade when people went to bed late at night after all the initial polls showed PML-N leading, but on waking a few hours later found that the PPP had won convincingly instead The PPP government announced its decision to challenge the Supreme Courts orders in no uncertain or unambiguous terms, loudly from the rooftop, so to speak. Just as in the mentioned election, the country went to bed that night, sleeping fitfully, wondering what the morrow would bring. But lo and behold, all the aggression and defiance on the governments stated position, somehow, went out of the window in the wee hours for some odd reason. What we heard, instead, was the completely chastened and unexpected response of pleading for some more time to review the matter. The invisible, but visible in the photo ops, powers that be I think have decided that they do not want to change horses in midstream. Nobody is particularly keen to take charge of a situation that is so bad on so many fronts. They have concluded that the existing bunch should continue to function, albeit, with more scrutiny and checks. The writing is on the wall, in capital letters to boot (no pun intended) The R word is the new theme: Re-invent, remould, remove, repair, in short, reform. The press release from the presidency stated, among other things, that the troika will protect the democratic process and will resolve (another R word) all issues in accordance with the constitution. A teetering economy is the source of major concern to everybody. As yet, there are no signs of the Cabinet being reorganised and corruption being plugged. Instead, there are disclosures that we are about to be taxed some more. Just as General Ziaul Haq tried to convert the already converted to Islam, so will this taxation be. The idiots who pay taxes in this country will cough up more, while those who do not will continue not to. This sounds like an absolute death knell to the average, salaried Pakistani. It is imperative that the rich must also be brought fully into the tax net. The demand from the outside world is also pointing towards putting our house in order ourselves to be helped by others. In the midst of all this, the NATO forces have begun attacking targets inside Pakistan with impunity and the first strong reaction was shown by the country by stopping all NATO supplies to Afghanistan at the Torkham border. Both the war on terror and the war-footing required for rehabilitation of the flood affectees cause us to ponder on how to begin anew and correct all the mistakes of the past. The way forward, most agree, is through providing better education and shrinking the rich-poor divide. But, nothing will happen unless the political will for genuine change becomes a factor too. As the saying goes, one can take a donkey to a well, but one cannot force it to drink, thus also the generals can advise, but cannot force. It will be an extremely sad day when the military concludes that they have no option left, but to physically intervene again. As the weather turns and Islamabad luxuriates in the nippy air, there is a prayer that the government will put the breather it has received from the Supreme Court, for appointing a NAB chairman and for writing to the Swiss courts, to good use and will do a serious rethink of its future course of action. The Pir Sahib of Pagara has moved up from making an odd and audacious statement now and then, to basking in the centre of the news on a daily basis. While before he made political predictions a la Paul the octopus, he is currently involved in making a single platform for the Muslim League. Unless PML-N joins the unified League, the whole exercise will be in vain. And if the PML-N does that, what about the brand new APML of Musharraf? Can our future have Nawaz Sharif and Musharraf on the same side? Odder alignments have happened in the past in politics and yesterdays enemies become todays allies, as we have seen many a time. Maybe we should get the real Pauls input on this one Postscript: Bollywood and all its icons have given India a glamour effect that hides and overshadows all that malfunctions within it. The preparations for and the lead-up to the Commonwealth Games being held in India, laid bare many of its claims to the word 'shining. They may excel in creativity and art forms, but they are certainly very far from the standards that are expected of hosting an international event of this standard. The poverty, the filth, the beggars, the shoddiness have all been highlighted by the games. The need for a revisit to their Kashmir policy also got a lot of focus in the recent weeks. None of this bad publicity can be blamed on Pakistan, thank goodness. Although I waited to hear it, but there have been no accusations, to date, of Pakistani agents placing snakes in athletes' rooms or for letting loose an army of mosquitoes The writer is a freelance columnist. Email: