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Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Investment: to Hi-techs or to Basic Needs

Disclaimer: The followings are just an analytical essay for educational purposes only and may not reflect the blogger's opinion on the subject matter.

The statement, “governments should not invest more on higher technologies, like advance computing, electronic and/or weaponry, while some civilians suffer poverty”, can actually translated into “Macro-economics theories cannot be practiced when the country is under-developed.” In fact, macro-economists, who tend to solve the cause of a problem, and micro-economists, who prefer short-term remedies, fought the similar arguments over many decades. In this essay, I’d contrast the advantages of investing in hi-tech including computer, electronic and communications technologies over spending budget more in solving basic needs.

Basic needs arise from poverty, which, in turn, arises from lack of technologies. A country can never be developed until it obtains proper “technical-know-how” to prop its economy instead of “technical-no-how”. Allocating more budgets for solving basic needs is but a temporary solution as it does not solve the problem. However, spending more research funds in technical fields like computing, computer science and computer engineering is a permanent solution, gaining technological advancement which can solve, eventually in time, basic needs of the whole country.

For example, India government had spent millions of dollars to alleviate the poverty of farmers of remote regions. Despite the amount of funds India government spent over many decades, the farmers were still poor. Finally, India’s Department of Agriculture introduced a scheme where farmers can access the internet (free of charge) via a computer with a hand winding generator on back of wandering bicycles. They can only access internet only once, sometimes twice, a week. However, the farmers are more updated of the price-changes in the grocery market and the poverty problem was somewhat relieved.

Therefore, both spending directly for basic needs and investing in technical matters can help the civilians a lot. However, investment is a long-term and strategic decision whereas solving directly basic needs is a short-term and tactical decision. What amount of budget in percentage to be allotted to each depends on many other factors, including but not limited to country’s population, economic situation, politics and other factors.

337 words (inclusive the header)

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