OK, we all know the global economy is in the crapper. But do global issues resonate with voters? Scenario A: In the U.S., Bush is carrying the can for being in power in the 8 years that led up to this point, and the Democrats have reaped the rewards at the polls. Scenario B: In the U.K., Gordon Brown is feeling the wrath of the electorate. Having been chancellor for a decade, he's assumed to be in control of the economy. Now that he's Prime Minister, the British public is blaming him. Local election results this week have been a disaster for his party, and if repeated at next year's General Election will see the Tories in power with a big majority. Paradox: It has been stated by several commentators that the global economic downturn has been caused by the only truly global entities: the big banks and the markets. Meanwhile, two countries with broadly similar economic profiles are being impacted by a global economic downturn, and one country is blaming a conservative administration and expecting a liberal one to fix it, while the other appears about to vote the conservatives in to clean up the socialists' mess. Question: Do voters consider that some factors may be outside the control of national governments, or do they just want to kick the incumbent to make themselves feel better? Caveat: Yes, I know it's a broad analogy, but the question remains about what impact global issues have on domestic elections, and what power domestic administrations have to shape global issues.