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Economic Sense of Justified & Repercussions

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Category: My Life
Published Date Written by Jason Loo
riseecon01

How is our tax money being spent ? Besides the usual infrastructure upgrades and aspiring new buildings, govt systems has been steadily web-bified. This provides a convenient channel for citizens to perform the required transactions online. They merely need to go to the govt building to collect the necessary documents. One example is the recent announcement of online application for replacement of MyKad (Malaysia identify card). The effort to put the applications online must be lauded and promoted.

riseecon03

However, the thing to be aware of is the over-reliance on technology to perform the necessary tasks or activities. Imagine a day when systems are hit and does not work for a long period of time. What will the people do then ... and this goes for both sides of the coin, the users and the operations side of the applications. The impact might be that operations does not know how to proceed without the technology to guide them ..

Moving away from the subject of govt systems for a while, one common example is the use of clutches in manual transmission vechiles vs auto transmission vehicles. Majority of the preferred vehicles now all come with automatic transmission gears, oftentimes making the only time when a person uses a manual transmission is in driving school. Even that may not be true if the "Auto" only driving license is introduced (refer to here . .http://paultan.org/2010/11/02/automatic-transmission-only-driving-license-in-the-works/).

riseecon04

Ok, so what I am saying is that I do hope that a backup plan is in place for manual operations, in any case where technology is involved to reduce workload and physical customer interfacing. I believe in any case, facing a customer head-on is the best approach towards resolving any conflict or pressing issues. The use of technology widens this gap, although providing the necessary convenience.

Anyway, back to the subject at hand, what things justifies the increase in prices in goods and basic services >> well, for my haircut session, the barber's services included a  massage, the use of sterilized razor, towel to clean up the loose hairs on the face and neck. More importantly, the environment was clean and cozy (yes, i fell asleep a few times and no .. i still had hair when i woke up).

But what about other services / goods / food prices ... there has been an evident steady increase across all categories of expenses from properties, raw materials, food etc .. all this has contributed to the inflation of our country (although it has been stated that our 'reported' inflation is among the lowest in the region). Besides the point of price increases, i have always wondered if our salaries increments reflect the actual inflation rate.

A recent article highlighted the plight of our low to middle-income citizens who are finding it harder and harder to survive in the constant increase of everything ..from property prices to tid-bits (http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/malaysians-struggle-to-cope-as-food-prices-soar/). Has the phrase "the poor becomes poorer and rich become richer" becoming more and more a reality now ? Find out in the next installment of Economic Sense :)

P.S. Latest update courtest of MSN Malaysia and Malaysian Insider news ...

The purchasing power of KL residents is 33.8% of New Yorkers; 42% compared to
London, 33.7% to Sydney, 32.6% to Los Angeles, and 31.6% to Zurich.
KL workers need to labour 22 minutes for a bread loaf. In comparison, Los
Angeles counterparts take 18 minutes. In Sydney, it's 16 minutes. In Tokyo, 15
minutes. In Zurich, 12 minutes.

Broadband comparison summary:

Kuala Lumpur - 5Mbps broadband package - RM149
London - 10Mbps broadband
package - GBP13.50
Melbourne - 5-8Mbps broadband package - AUD40
New York
- 7Mbps broadband package - USD41.95

In KL, a Honda Civic is priced at RM115,000 - 20 times an auditor's average
monthly earnings.
In Melbourne & London, the price is respectively AUD25,000 and GBP19,000
- 3 times an auditor's average monthly earnings in those places.

Source :

http://news.malaysia.msn.com/regional/article.aspx?cp-documentid=4785148