Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Most Glaring State

I had relatives who used to live on the other side of the Jersey River. They called me up last week and they were in panic. They were so active and affected in their politics that they realized that it's already six weeks away and so they had to work harder, twice the effort this time, to get the Democratic vote out for John Kerry.

New Jersey is a tossed-up state. It can be recalled that Al Gore won by 16 points in 2000, and in the last three election cycles, it has voted solidly Democratic.

As of this writing, their result of one poll showed that Kerry and George Bush were running neck and neck. Kerry's gain of two digits has evaporated within the margin of error.

A columnist once commented that the inadequacy of nationwide polling underlined the situation in New Jersey. The polls showed no discernible daylight between the presidential candidates.

It is when you examine closely that you will know that a perfect example of a trend that is most glaring that has put into waste his convenient electoral map is the state of New Jersey.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Sorry, Blame It On Who?

The situation in Iraq has worsen every single day even if the president tries to speak in terms of its positive views. The situation has gone intolerable no matter how the president tries to persuade the reporters worldwide to play along and proclaim to the whole of the world that there is nothing wrong with Iraq and its people are okay.

The country of Iraq is in shock and awe. It is in shock and awe because it is now experiencing the very ironies in the societies. Blame it to their abundance in oil but still it's no excuse that its people deserve the horrifying experiences that their government (and the outside force) has brought them. Blame it to their being naive, but still it's an issue of peace, justice and transparency here that put its people to danger – the political and economic issues, which are ever since neverending.

The situation is just upsetting.

Thursday, January 1, 2009 on Facebook ban

This'll feel like me going off on somewhat of a tangent considering my ever-present focus on political issues, but I think it's important enough to be mentioned as it concerns the future of my site and the “behind the scenes” matters that occur when you're reading these posts.

Lately, I've been looking for ways to take a look at the more political aspects of the blog itself, and its role as a method of communicating my opinions on topics that sometimes invite a lot of controversy. When you're blogging about global politics, people tend to get involved, and it's one of the most popular subjects if you follow the rankings of sites like the CNN blog on the WordPress ranking tables.

Loads of blogs about blogging (bit of a matryoshka principle, I know) like the MoreDigital blog do a lot of talking about the political and industrial issues surrounding the art of representing political ideas through blogging and social networking, and it's something to think about. Do I become a politically-biased site by commenting one way or another?

In fact, is neutrality really the way to go at all? Is it not just a scam to convince others you have no political opinions? When you really think about it, aren't we treading on thin ice when we know that people researching the same issue but supporting a different political or ideological standpoint and then focus this into your comments section. What seems like an interesting issue can quickly devolve into a desperate battle of self-defence against those who see your blog post as anything but neutral.

When you're thinking about posts like MoreDigital's blog about the Facebook ban in Pakistan and the resulting controversy surrounding the offensive images of the Prophet Mohammed, you've got to give them credit – that takes serious courage to come out and tackle an issue like that without staying neutral. The important thing is however, like their post, to make sure the reader knows they support both sides, while only criticising the arguments made themselves.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Same Contribution, Different Dues

Capital is the part of the wealth of a country which is employed in production that is necessary to give effect to labor. Developing countries are exerting all their best efforts to attract foreign investors. However, there are investors who are not paying what is due of them. Given that there there are those who are paid below the minimum wage, what will happen to those small industries and enterprises owned by the locals? For sure, not all of them can compete in the market.

If different industries apply different amounts of capital per laborer, then the rate of profit will also differ across industries. What does this mean? The "labor-embodied" theory of value would only work if the degree of capital-intensity was the same across all sectors?

If the natural price of labor depends on the price of food, necessaries, and conveniences required for the support of the laborer and his family, then why is it that a manager has a different wage from an ordinary employee?

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Men Versus Machines

Free market principles are evident in Asian economies. However, isn't it also true that some Asian countries - Japan, for example – ascribe to an approach to economic development that emphasize government action to stimulate industry? Japan has had its economic troubles in recent years, as all countries do, but does its general success give credence to the theory that government should actively work to stimulate industry?

It is stated in Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations that the invention of machines facilitated and abridged labor. Does this not also degrade man power and at the same time removes the opportunity for the laborer to develop skills in performing the task?

If every laborer has only one task to perform and specialized with, what if a situation comes that there is a need for a new man to perform such task isn't it that it will be more convenient to have a man who is already part of the company who could have learned the skill than to hire a new one?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Humans Aren't Robots

Why do people have different incomes? Why do farmers get the least of benefits and regarded as the lowest class when they are the ones producing our basic necessities - food?

Following Smith's idea, shouldn't the government allot a bigger part of the tax to education and to our farmers? A huge bulk of our taxes only goes to the pockets of our corrupt officials who contribute nothing but plunder. How about a reform for the distribution of government capital (tax) to government employees, say a "sky scraper" raise for our beloved public school teachers?

Adam Smith offered that one of the solutions to improve and increase the speed of production is to apply the division of labor, and it seems to be true because the skill of the worker will be focused in what he/she always does. But humans by nature are bound to be creative and will always divert themselves to other things, what would be the effect of this to their work? and what can be done to satisfy their cravings for diversion?

Monday, June 9, 2008

United We Stand, Divided We Fall

In The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, the improvement of the laborer is also the improvement of the country. Is this true? Or does this still remain a theory? If yes, what are the countries that delve on the improvement of the laborer? If no, why not?

Also, Adam Smith (in the same book) discussed something about a scenario saying than even if wage is increased, there is a point that it will no longer benefit the workers (Iron Rule of Wages). Do you believe that this is a sound hypothesis?

The assembly line introduced by the Americans follow the observation of Adam Smith that division of labor yields a lot of advantages. But does division of labor imply specialization of work at all times? The division of labor leads to convenience for men, but not always to the progress of the society. To what extent of the division of labor favorable to progress?