Al Rai is the most popular Jordanian daily news paper, who has been leading the news papers Jordanian market for over 30 years, and is always considered to be the voice of the government and its policies advocate.
With such years of experience and spread in the Jordan Market, one would expect a high level of professionalism. Unfortunately, lately I have noticed two stupid mistakes that one shouldn’t expect to happen in such newspaper.
1. Before yesterday, they had this article about American summer movies with a title “150 movies are ready for the American summer season”. At first, I thought that title is weird as we are nearly at the end of the summer, but I told myself that it is probably a review about summer movies, and so I started reading. Slowly I started to realize that this must be a year old article. First they talked about Mission Impossible 3, then superman return which kept me a bit skeptical, but when I read Da Vinci Code! I was sure that this is a mistake!
2. A week or 2 ago, I came across an article criticizing the effect of video games on the children of Zarqa. It grabbed my attention to read not just because I am a big fan of video games but also because the title was something like “Spread of the Atari games in Zarqa is causing many problems”!
ATARI??!? It is either the article is written 20+ years ago and is republished, or it is the writer who is still living in 1985! It is common to call Video games with the major console currently dominating the sales. Some say lets play Nintendo, others lets play play station, and before yes, it was lets play Atari as it dominated the market back in the early 80s, but after 20 years, and now with them being out of the hardware market, is it appropriate for a professional writer in the leading Jordanian newspaper to mention Atari as a synonyms of video games??!
Fahed AL Fanek 9/11 article
I usually love reading Dr. Fahed Al Fanek economic article. He usually pushes in defense of raising the government hand of supporting certain elementary items that helps in keeping prices lower while putting much strain on the government yearly budget. He always gives logical reasons, like we are supporting items that goes to everyone whether he worth the support or not, and whether he is a Jordanian citizen or not, which is true somehow. In other times he highlights the problems of the budget and how keeping on expanding its shortage would cause a bigger damage to our economy. He gives an example of a patient that has to take a bitter medicine or else would die as a mean of telling us that it is okay to lower our level of living a bit rather than having it destroyed later on which makes does make sense.
Yesterday he gave an interesting comparison that I don’t agree with. He compared physical occupation with economic domination. He said that we have obtained our physical occupation a long time ago but we are still under economic occupation. He then continued and pointed out how nations are ready to pay with their sons and blood to achieve physical independence, so why not pay a little to achieve our economic independence?
I personally don’t think that achieving economic independence is possible. With the way the world is heading of freeing trade between countries the way Dr. Fahed Al Fanek always calls for. It is impossible for any country to be economically independent of the rest of the world. The USA being one of the largest economies can always play the card of economical sanctions towards a small country like Jordan whether we were able to all our debts or not.
We are only 5% dependent of foreign aid based on the expected budget of next year, and thus we enjoy a respected amount of economic independence that unlikely to get any drastic changes if we raised the prices of fuel as Dr. Fahed calls for.
I would prefer to keep our current living level than lowering it for the sake of achieving economic independence that is impossible.
Speaking of economy and prices:
I really have to wonder why our government has to wait for the King’s orders in order to take actions to prevent current prices inflations.
First it has been the fuel prices; the king came up and asked the government not to raise the prices anymore this year and they obliged.
Yesterday, he also issued them an order to open several public small markets for vegetables and fruits in all of the cities in the country and provide means to help lowering its prices.
While I am happy for such actions, I can’t understand why didn’t the government do it by itself? Why don’t they think of ways to reduce the implications of inflations on our citizens by themselves? Why do they have to wait for orders from the king?