November 25, 2004

Transparency and Accountability - How much does an Arab President or King Make

I read in this Arabic article about the salaries of presidents and kings in - and out - of the Arab world, I was shocked to say the least, not from the numbers (needs verification), but from the direct correlation of how bad a ruler performs & its being directly proportional to the wealth or salaries they hoard!

If George Bush earns $400K a year for being the leader of the strongest nation on earth, and given the high expenses in the US, compared to the relatively much lower costs of living in our dear Arab world, it is fair to say that no Arab leader should be making 1/20th (One twentieth) of what George is making!

It is notable that South Asia has worked out an excellent "Profit Sharing" mechanism, the more profit the country makes, the higher the bonus for its leader, I seriously demand that our parliaments implement this system! Although our most precious Arab leaders will start out paying from their own pockets, but eventually I am more than sure they will wise up and start running their countries as a good business, in that case I am for multiplying their bonuses without limits !

I personally do not think that whatever any ruler pockets, no matter how much it is, can affect the national economy of any Arab country, the problem is not in any of this, the catastrophe is in what follows this "pocketing", to cover it up, and to clear it, a ruler has to look the other way too many times, approve corrupt key people in his government, who in turn help out smaller thieves in getting away with their lute! In what turns into an avalanche of corruption !!!

Now let me give you my very own pearl of wisdom:

Without accountability, you are just asking for corruption!
Without transparency, power corruption will flourish!

1VPA = One VERY Pissed Arab

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