Publicity, Productivity, Profits, Politics and the Public
I may be able to write a dissertation on each of the items mentioned above but the intentions are brief and entirely different.
I have made few resolutions after the last general election.
1. One was not to tune in to local TV including not watching Cricket unless of course our one and only Mahela is on song.
2. Two was to stop buying national papers including Sunday Editions.
3. Three was to stop engaged in political discussion of any kind.
4. Take my public profile and publicity to the lowest possible level, down to the email level, where I was only a digital entity with no worth at all and lot of guys/girls except my close friends will delete any electronic message of mine in a flash, without even reading the heading.
Mind you, email has taken even the little privacy we had and with the common courtesy.
5. Five was to increase my productivity leaps and bounds and post a blog everyday if possible related to Linux, its derivatives, utilities, its goodies, baddies and the uglies and if I cannot find a topic in Linux to post some of my bizarre dreams if not some scientific stuff.
Like the five precepts I have not broken any one of them except the number TWO.
My productivity had been exponential and come November even before our short vacation I was on mental vacation preoccupied with the Wonder Budget 2012.
I had only one irritation for the entire year which was uncalled from one of my nasty colleagues (I wonder could I call him a colleague now that this event did happen without any provocation?) and since I was almost on top of the world I could manage that episode with three days of Metta Meditation.
When one has free time bad habits creep in. that was also accidentally.
I want to fix a new Air Pump to the fish tank in which the old one was malfunctioning (thanks to our Electricity Board’s not so constant voltage this was not the only gadget I lost this year). I had everything but two steel nails long enough and strong enough to support the Air Pump.
Mind you I got up at 11.30 A.M. I wanted to make some tea and my wife told me there is no sugar for tea but lunch was almost ready.
Then we had visitors and I jumped into their car and told them if I do not get to his hardware shop by 12 P.M, I have to hold this pump in that position till Monday. He was almost closing and I collected what I wanted except the double sided stickers to stick the telephone splitter on the wall now ready for free fall.
Bought some pastries and walk up to catch a three wheeler and in a flash of bad judgment I walked into the newspaper stall to see a large pile of Sunday English papers, not sold. I bought two publications which I decline to make public here because it will give bad publicity (what I am going to write is bad anyway) to them but suffice is to say not Sunday Observer. I wanted some critical analysis of the budget not some Yes, Sir entries from the Yes Men.
Came home first thing first cup of tea first.
Fixed the air pump and filled the tank with water to the required water pressure to see everything was OK.
Treat for my dog and sat to read the paper.
First the cartoons and Andy Capp, Wizard of Os and the others and then to the pictures of the young lassies and bogged down to reading about the budget.
There were so many advertisement and feature sets or supplements it took half an hour to find the pages with budgetary analysis.
What did I get for 100 Rupees?
Good dose of budgettorrhoeal (new Sri-Lankan word coined by me joining budget and diarrhoea) analysis.
It sickened me.
There were panel discussions and everybody who is somebody is hiding behind another.
It was we go round the mulberry bush scenario.
It was like collective responsibility of the cabinet of ministers.
I was none the wiser.
I can say lot about the budget but that is I am wasting my time.
I raise few question and get into the rel reason for this writing.
1. In the year we had the elections there was no proper budget.
Is it proper?
The common knowledge was that most of the money was spent on irregular activities except paying the salaries.
2. Was there a proper assessment of the budgetary forecast for 2011, objectively?
At least retrospectively did they analyze it before stepping into new budget.
3. Do we need a Central Bank?
4. Do we need a Treasury and a Treasury Secretary?
5. Do we need a huge public service now that like what was done to Central Bank we can streamline or stream role any institution with Executive Power including the Universities?
6. Have anybody analyzed the debt crisis that is slowly creeping into our hand to mouth economy?
7. Do we need to debate this White Paper / White Elephant any length of time in the parliament?
I am not asking this with any bad taste but only with thinking about my grandchildren.
Real reason I am writing this was to highlight that lot of people depend on the Sunday Paper for lot of publicity and to get their voice heard and get rid of bad goodies and bad debts.
Is the money spent by majority of them is going to the coffers of the paper magnets without any help to the advertiser.
Has anybody done any research on the effectiveness of this mega advertisement strategy?
Is the money well spent?
Can we do it in a better way?
I call it the Amazon Way.
Why not going for digital methods?
The Sunday Paper is thrown away the very next day and it is a huge waste of money and paper (along with rain forest).
The digital stuff remains in the Server.
Are we still carrying the Hana Miti (Bundles of Jute)?
If one has some good, goodies to sell one should go beyond the local boundaries (at least South East Asia) and start selling digitally.
That is my advice.
It might have some teething problems and might have to take “head on’ the initial inertia but given time an cloud computing coming to existence that is the way forward.