Haves and Have Nots: Who’s responsible ?


Top and bottom 1% together

Around 400,000 such persons (lying on the street above) can be fed for a day, with the amount of money spend on this car.  If you love cars, that’s one thing, but otherwise, are you part of this income disparity or against it ?

Now, check out following Income disparity comparison around the world. Red being greater inequality and Blue less and Purple in the middle.

gini map twotonefull pos.jpg

 

Have a look at this short video clip:

 

Ever wondered, why we see vast difference between haves and have nots, in almost every country. Rich are filthy rich (no offense), while poor living in extreme poverty. Rich throw half of the food eg in Saudi, when they’re full, while poor eat half meal to their satisfaction, once a week in Somalia. Some have made cars with gold, while others spend their life pondering how to accumulate gold for their girls marriage in India. Some go on vacation in Spain with entourage of more than 3000, while others save money his whole life to perform Haj (Pilgrimage) travel to Makkah, with two or three family members.

Let’s take a look at some startling facts:

  • Just like in America, the wealthiest 0.5% control over 35% of world wealth, Credit Suisse has compiled and released its latest “Global Wealth Report.”
  • “The combined wealth of the world’s 200 richest people hit $1,000,000,000,000 in 1999; the combined incomes of the 582,000,000 people living in the 43 least developed countries is $146,000,000,000.”
  • Pakistan’s 36,000 elite millionaires owns 40% of Pakistan’s total wealth (Rs. 2,118 billion) as per SBP report.
  • I remember, in 2011, US dumped food worth $6 billion, because it doesn’t want to disrupt global food price, if it gives on charity to any country.
  • “The U.S. poverty rate is now the third worst among the developed nations tracked by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.”
  • “The GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of the poorest 48 nations (of the world’s countries) is less than the combined wealth of the world’s 3 richest people.”
  • “The wealthiest nation on Earth has the widest gap between rich and poor of any industrialized nation. “
  • “20% of the population in developed nations consume 86% of the world’s goods.”
  • “It would cost approximately $40 billion to offer basic education, clean water and sanitation, reproductive health for women, and basic health and nutrition to every person in every developing country.”
  • The number of U.S. residents living in poverty edged up to 46,000,000 in 2012
  • The richest 1 percent of the population received almost a fifth of the national households’ income in 2012, thus breaking the previous record set in 1928.
  • 870 million people worldwide do not have enough food to eat.
  • The poorest 40 percent of the world’s population accounts for 5 percent of global income. The richest 20 percent accounts for three-quarters of world income.
  • According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty.
  • “The developing world now spends $13.00 on debt repayment for every $1.00 it receives in grants.”
  • We normally pay 10 times more on a meal, while we can eat ourselves modestly and instead feed 9 people with rest of the money.

Now take a look at the situation of debt of the majority of population and find how it’s skyrocketing for the poor and falling for the rich. This clearly tells us that rich are getting richer and poor are getting poor. I heard ‘Interest’ or what we call it as ‘Riba’ has such effect ? Following data is from US trends, to elucidate the point, rest of the world has similar picture.

Growing income inequality has led to ballooning debt loads for the bottom 95% of Americans.

Now look at the income disparity graph as an example from US, over the decades and see how the Top 1% progressed in it’s income and how the bottom percentiles have remained subdued, effectively increasing the divide between haves and have nots over those years.

Picture speaks a thousand words, I’ll leave following photos to your imaginations.

I will never waste my food 

“It would cost approximately $40 billion to offer basic education, clean water and sanitation, reproductive health for women, and basic health and nutrition to every person in every developing country.”

Did that happen all of a sudden ? Why did that happen in the first place ? Should we hold ‘Haves’ accountable or are the ‘Have nots’ culprit themselves ?

Sources & Further Readings:

http://myscienceacademy.org/2013/09/13/us-inequality-at-historic-high-surpassing-roaring-20s/

http://www.massrecycle.org/getinvolved/advocacy/organics-waste-ban

http://www.wfp.org/hunger/stats

http://www.facethefactsusa.org/facts/supersized-hunger-pangs-supersized-waste-infographic

http://money.cnn.com/2012/05/02/news/economy/income-debt-inequality/

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2011/05/income-inequality-around-the-world-is-a-failure-of-capitalism/238837/

Pakistan’s Economic Expenditure Prudence – Budget 2012-13


Budget at a glance

Budget distribution at a glance

As they say, picture is worth a thousand words, so I made the picture first and it’s more or less self-explanatory.

Here is my key observation, when I first tried to understand the budget:

  1. Around Rs. 1 trillion (‘kharab’) is spent on debt servicing (interest payment alone) in 1 year.
  2. I thought, our major portion of revenue goes to Defence sector ?

Additionally, when we spend our fortune in debt servicing (read interest payment), naturally how are we going to have funds to invest in education, lack of which, is the MOTHER OF ALL ISSUES WE FACE TODAY. Secondly, looking at the fact that majority of our population does not have access to the basic health services, eg we have estimated 140,000 doctors and 120,000 beds in healthcare facilities, in the country, that makes the ratio of hospital bed to population as 6:10,000 and doctor to people 1:1000 roughly. Now, compare how much we are spending on health sector to improve the situation, a measly Rs 8 billion for a population of 180 million.

budgetatgalance

And lastly, we should be shrewd, not to rely on foreign aid and donor agencies, like Paris Club, IMF, or enter into multilateral agreements for foreign countries, which we can easily see, is quite far from an aid and in fact a major cause of all resulting burden to the economy, in the form of – inflation, poverty, lack of development funds for education, social uplift, unemployment, and eventually developing a sense of hopelessness in the society. It’s estimated that we have to pay ~$5billion, in the form of debt servicing, to IMF alone, ie a burden of Rs. 500 billion to the exchequer. With Pakistan’s debt hovering at an alarming rate of 68% of GDP, and external debt at $62 billion (Rs. 6.2 trillion), how are we going to survive, is a daunting question for the new incumbent government. If I start to research about each of these foreign loan agreements and their terms, I am sure, I would have startling facts there as well, like how much we are taking as loan and how much we end up paying over decades, while remaining slaves, accepting dictates from those foreign governments.

We were told 1400 years ago, that we could not benefit from either giving or using interest (usury), but we tend to neglect history. We were clearly explained that interest creates economic disparity and divides the society into haves and have-nots eventually. And now we see individuals in the world like Warren Buffet, with $60 billions, can possibly buy many countries many times over.

Wealth distribution in Pakistan is no different, with the top 10% of the population earning 27.6% and the bottom 10% earning only 4.1% of the income[10]  According to the HDI, 60.3% of Pakistan’s population lives on under $2 a day, which is like 100 million people.

How long are we going to call a war against God and His Messenger (‘nauzobillah’), while trying to justify the use of interest (‘riba’ or usury). It’s evident, that we going nowhere, but harming ourselves.

We don’t need a genius to sort our issues out, anyone with a genuine ‘will’ to serve the nation, can correct our direction and bring prosperity back to the nation.

Think!

I have written another analysis on Pakistan Budget 2013, listing it’s pros and cons and what is most important. You can read here.

 

Sources and Further Reading:

http://www.sbp.org.pk/ecodata/pakdebtsvr.pdf

http://pakobserver.net/detailnews.asp?id=130030

http://www.finance.gov.pk/publications/DPS_12.pdf