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'[OT] Venezuela zero tolerance policy'
2004\09\23@184109 by Carlos Marcano

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Robert Rolf wrote:


> Zero tolerance for drunk driving seemed to work quite well in
> Venezuela (circa 1980). If you drove drunk, and cause an accident,
> the soldiers patrolling the streets executed you on the spot.
> There are NO repeat offenders, and first time DWI is nearly
> non existent. The severe deterrent seemed to work well enough there.

 May I ask where did you get those figures? I am venezuelan and I have
never heard about it but I am not too old so I could be wrong even thought
this sound pretty drastic even for my "third world" country.

Regards,

*Carlos Marcano*
-Guri, Venezuela-
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2004\09\23@202804 by Robert Rolf

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A good friend of mine was posted for several months
to an oil refinery upgrade project in Caracus?? back in the
early '80s. That is what he told me. He had pictures of the armed
soldiers on every street corner, so I took him at his word.
I did think it a bit extreme, but given the way some other
regimes operated (Kadafy, Mugaby, Sadam), it wouldn't have surprised me
that it actually happened.
Maybe is was just the refinery's way of keeping the 'foreigners'
from getting into trouble and causing headaches for the HR department.
If so, it DID work.

I do know that for westerners posted to Saudi Arabia, having
any alcohol outside the company compound would get you thrown in jail.
(brother in law was there in the mid 1990's).

I figured that someone on this list would correct my
mis?information.

R

Carlos Marcano wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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2004\09\23@224416 by Carlos Marcano

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Robert Rolf wrote:

> A good friend of mine was posted for several months
> to an oil refinery upgrade project in Caracus??

 Caracas, the capital of the country, Venezuela.


> back in theearly '80s. That is what he told me. He had pictures of the
armed
> soldiers on every street corner, so I took him at his word.

Those soldiers could be there for anything imaginable.

> I did think it a bit extreme, but given the way some other
> regimes operated (Kadafy, Mugaby, Sadam), it wouldn't have surprised me
> that it actually happened.

  Venezuela have been in a democratic system since 1958, when the last
dictator Marcos Pérez Jimenez was kicked out of the country. Since then we
have elected our presidents without any major flaws in the continuity of
democracy*. Regimes like the ones "operated" from Kadaffi, Mugabe and
S.Hussein have not been installed here at any time since those days **. In
fact we have been the most solid democracy in Latin America for a while (40+
years)(Look that I wrote "solid", not "best" or "most efficient")

> Maybe is was just the refinery's way of keeping the 'foreigners'
> from getting into trouble and causing headaches for the HR department.
> If so, it DID work.

 I dont think that they werent doing anything that any "Prevention and
Control" team from any industrial area would have not done.

> I do know that for westerners posted to Saudi Arabia, having
> any alcohol outside the company compound would get you thrown in jail.
> (brother in law was there in the mid 1990's).

 Even taking into account that we are the fith major oil suplier in the
world, Venezuela is very far from having any style of living that could
reassemble any eastern country, Saudi Arabia included. In fact, to my
displeasure, we have been a very "relaxed" country, sort of "tropical" wich
has leaded us to a corrupt society but not to an abusive or oppresive
regime, yet.

> I figured that someone on this list would correct my
> mis?information.

 I know how hard can be to have real details from our countries.

Regards,

*Carlos Marcano*
-Guri, Venezuela-

* In 1992 there was a failed try from some militar people to grab power
through the use of arms.

** Since 1998, the people elected a populist, left winged (please dont start
a flame war on this, is just the way himself positionates), ex-military,
former failed copu d'etat leader as the president. We have been transiting
since then major disturbing days as the government have turned into a
"mildly" but constantly oppresive one. The last sign of this have showed in
the big possibilites of a possible fraud played by the government in a
recent recall to determine if the president had to leave his job.
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2004\09\23@232734 by Russell McMahon

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> In fact, to my
> displeasure, we have been a very "relaxed" country, sort of "tropical"
> wich
> has leaded us to a corrupt society but not to an abusive or oppresive
> regime, yet.

Corruption is sad. It slowly leaks into all levels of society and is said to
be one of the greatest barriers to overall development. And one of the
hardest things to root out. Once everyone depends on "corruption"
(kickbacks, bribes, ...) as part of their standard income then any serious
attempts at removal tend to make life impossible for the average person.



       Russell McMahon

PS
Just for information - more normal English usage in the above sentence would
be "... has lead us to a ...".

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2004\09\24@000113 by Carlos Marcano

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Russell McMahon wrote:

> Corruption is sad. It slowly leaks into all levels of society and
> is said to be one of the greatest barriers to overall development.
> And one of the hardest things to root out. Once everyone depends
> on "corruption" (kickbacks, bribes, ...) as part of their standard
> income then any serious attempts at removal tend to make life
> impossible for the average person.

 The worst part of corruption is when it is assumed like the standard or
the "normal" way of doing things. That is the point when a society is
getting beyond control and the damage from a "corrupt way of living" is
almost unstopable. This is the case with Venezuela´s society. Here you can´t
get even a passport without "wetting the hand" of the public employee so you
dont have to wait for gazillions years to get it. In fact if you comment to
anyone something like "Hey, I got my driver´s license in 5 days", he would
instanly ask "Cool, how much did you give to the guy?". There is a
particular nickname for the persons who act like this, we call them "vivos",
something like "alive", just in the literal meaning. The "vivos" are the
majority of the venezuelans 'cause they know how to bribe, how to get days
off work, how to steal places in rows in the bank and lots of other minor
ways of corruption. The other side of the story are the "pendejos" (the
suckers or something like that): people with honest ways of doing thing, who
ussually get things later than others, pay taxes, drive under speed limits
and get passports after waiting for 3 months or more! I have come to a point
that I know that this beautiful, god privileged country won´t ever be a
developed one just because of how deep is corruption in our genes. It is
sad, but it is the truth. Plus goverments does not want to fixed this
situation so they can keep with their "work".

>
> PS
> Just for information - more normal English usage in the above
> sentence would
> be "... has lead us to a ...".

 That is why I love this list: Superb technical info and english learning,
thanks for the pointer Russel!

Regards,

*Carlos Marcano*
-Guri, Venezuela-
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2004\09\24@004125 by Alex Harford

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On Fri, 24 Sep 2004 15:17:47 +1200, Russell McMahon
<spam_OUTapptechTakeThisOuTspamparadise.net.nz> wrote:
> > In fact, to my
> > displeasure, we have been a very "relaxed" country, sort of "tropical"
> > wich
> > has leaded us to a corrupt society but not to an abusive or oppresive
> > regime, yet.
>
>
> PS
> Just for information - more normal English usage in the above sentence would
> be "... has lead us to a ...".
>

Shouldn't that actually be 'led' ie the past tense?

Alex
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2004\09\24@010234 by Padu

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All of this sounds too familiar to me... (I'm from Brasil)


----- Original Message ----- From: "Carlos Marcano" <.....carlosmarcano78KILLspamspam@spam@cantv.net>
To: "Microcontroller discussion list - Public." <piclistspamKILLspammit.edu>
Sent: Thursday, September 23, 2004 9:31 PM
Subject: RE: [OT] Venezuela zero tolerance policy


{Quote hidden}

can´t
> get even a passport without "wetting the hand" of the public employee so
you
> dont have to wait for gazillions years to get it. In fact if you comment
to
> anyone something like "Hey, I got my driver´s license in 5 days", he would
> instanly ask "Cool, how much did you give to the guy?". There is a
> particular nickname for the persons who act like this, we call them
"vivos",
> something like "alive", just in the literal meaning. The "vivos" are the
> majority of the venezuelans 'cause they know how to bribe, how to get days
> off work, how to steal places in rows in the bank and lots of other minor
> ways of corruption. The other side of the story are the "pendejos" (the
> suckers or something like that): people with honest ways of doing thing,
who
> ussually get things later than others, pay taxes, drive under speed limits
> and get passports after waiting for 3 months or more! I have come to a
point
{Quote hidden}

learning,
{Quote hidden}

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2004\09\24@052606 by Howard Winter

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Corruption...

On Thu, 23 Sep 2004 22:01:59 -0700, Padu wrote:

> All of this sounds too familiar to me... (I'm from
Brasil)

I wonder why South America seems (from this side of the
pond) to have corruption as a normal way of life?  I
wonder if the Conquistadors had it as their way of doing
things, or perhaps the natives used it to make their
life easier under the invaders, and it's carried on
since?

It's certainly a problem where it occurs, because unless
you have enough people in power who are prepared to go
without the "extras" (something like Eliot Ness and the
Untouchables) then it is pretty-much impossible to root
out.

I'm just really glad it isn't a problem here - if you
tried to offer a bribe, say at the Passport office, you
would be in a *lot* of trouble!  That's not to say it
doesn't go on in other less official ways, particularly
in business, but when (if!) it's discovered it is dealt
with severely.

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


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2004\09\24@063407 by Spehro Pefhany

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At 10:26 AM 9/24/2004 +0100, you wrote:

{Quote hidden}

OTOH, I've heard people from countries where corruption is rife
complaining that there is no way to make things happen with money in
countries like the US/Canada/UK. For example, if you would like your
passport the same day rather than in a week (maybe to avoid a time-consuming
return visit to the office) and can't show proof it's actually
required, my officials will tell you to go away. A bit of baksheesh,
not really a significant sum to the person requesting the service, but
a nice 'tip' to the civil servant, could work wonders in some
countries. Same with C'sofA for setting up industrial processes, though
now the gov'ts have begun offering 'expedited' service (for an extra $100K
service fee). That's not corruption, but it costs a lot more!

One of our suppliers in China has a fellow at the local power station on
'retainer' to ensure that if power cuts are made that some other factory
gets cut. The reason it's worth it to them is that their process is such
that they lose an entire batch of material if they lose power.

Best regards,

Spehro Pefhany --"it's the network..."            "The Journey is the reward"
.....speffKILLspamspam.....interlog.com             Info for manufacturers: http://www.trexon.com
Embedded software/hardware/analog  Info for designers:  http://www.speff.com




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2004\09\24@080104 by Carlos A. Marcano V.

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Howard Winter wrote:


>I wonder why South America seems (from this side of the
>pond) to have corruption as a normal way of life?  I
>wonder if the Conquistadors had it as their way of doing
>things, or perhaps the natives used it to make their
>life easier under the invaders, and it's carried on
>since?

Perhaps there could be an explanation lying somewhere in those statements
but there have passed 500 years since Columbus "discovered" us and even in
that long time we haven´t been able to change the way of doing things. I
compare this to the North american people, they "suffered" a similar
process when they got "discovered": conquerors (from another part of the
world) and natives (also from another part of the world) and in many less
years they have accomplished LOTS of things that we south americans only
can dream of.

>It's certainly a problem where it occurs, because unless
>you have enough people in power who are prepared to go
>without the "extras" (something like Eliot Ness and the
>Untouchables) then it is pretty-much impossible to root
>out.

I agree. The prime problem is that our governors do not have the will to
change things, because in a new order they will loose the privileges that
power (and more precisely, latin american power) gives.
>I'm just really glad it isn't a problem here - if you
>tried to offer a bribe, say at the Passport office, you
>would be in a *lot* of trouble!  That's not to say it
>doesn't go on in other less official ways, particularly
>in business, but when (if!) it's discovered it is dealt
>with severely.

And that is the quid of the subject: If you are not afraid of law, you will
ignore it. Latin americans know that laws are usually dead letters because
if you have the money you will be "over" the law. Just as simple and sad as
that.

Regards,

*Carlos Marcano*
-Guri, Venezuela-


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2004\09\24@083207 by Gerhard Fiedler

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> OTOH, I've heard people from countries where corruption is rife
> complaining that there is no way to make things happen with money in
> countries like the US/Canada/UK.

In a way, corruption is the essence of capitalism, isn't it? Everything has
its price, determined by "the market"... Anything else is just stinkin'
communism :)

Gerhard
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2004\09\24@085931 by Mauricio Jancic

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>>All of this sounds too familiar to me... (I'm from Brasil)

Jejejeje, Here I say Hello from Argentina...

Mauricio Jancic
Janso Desarrollos
Microchip Consultant Program Member
(54) 11-4542-3519
EraseMEinfospam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTjanso.com.ar
http://www.janso.com.ar


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2004\09\24@090635 by Russell McMahon

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>>It's certainly a problem where it occurs, because unless
>>you have enough people in power who are prepared to go
>>without the "extras" (something like Eliot Ness and the
>>Untouchables) then it is pretty-much impossible to root
>>out.

> OTOH, I've heard people from countries where corruption is rife
> complaining that there is no way to make things happen with money in
> countries like the US/Canada/UK. For example, if you would like your
> passport the same day rather than in a week (maybe to avoid a
> time-consuming
> return visit to the office) and can't show proof it's actually
> required, my officials will tell you to go away.

That's spoiling the whatever it was for a h'apporth of tar!
In NZ you can get passports at normal, fast or super fast rates.
Price rises drastically for super fast.
All official.
Allowing it "back door" is exactly what you MUSt avoid like the plague.

> A bit of baksheesh,
> not really a significant sum to the person requesting the service, but
> a nice 'tip' to the civil servant, could work wonders in some
> countries.

And where does it stop?
Absolutely nowehere, in practice.

> One of our suppliers in China has a fellow at the local power station on
> 'retainer' to ensure that if power cuts are made that some other factory
> gets cut. The reason it's worth it to them is that their process is such
> that they lose an entire batch of material if they lose power.

And this ensures that others with equal sensitivity to power cuts get MORE
power cuts than they deserve. The person getting the advantage is almost NOT
paying the opportunity cost of providing for fail safe power service. And
anything they DO pay does not go into making the supply more reliable, but
into corrupt pockets. And the end result is almost certainly to make the
power system as a whole worse. Next you end up paying 'protection" as per
USA 1930s (and ever since?).

The examples you raise are excellent ones to illustrate why corruption is
bad. A little here and there MAY not be too noticed. Extend that across the
system and ALL involved suffer. Nobody wins overall. Some individuals win
somewhat.



               RM





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2004\09\24@094559 by Carlos A. Marcano V.

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Russell McMahon wrote:

>And where does it stop?
>Absolutely nowehere, in practice.

And I must add, where does it start?

I think that my friends from Brasil (yes, with s) and Argentina would agree
that in our countries we are raised, intentionally or not, to be corrupt.
Let me explain myself. Latin american children grow up in so vicious
societys that parents are "forced" (even thought moral should come first)
to teach their kids "survival" schemes. I am not saying that they show you
the best way to give money to goverment employees but to act always trying
to get the biggest benefit for yourselves and to avoid being a victim of
someone eager. As an example, It is tipical that teenagers involved in
minor traffic accidents watch as their parents spend some (or lots) of
money to get them away from trouble (traffic police is one of the most
corrupted and also one of the most underpaid in the country**), instead of
accepting their responsability for their actions. This way this kids "know"
that there is a way of getting out of jams just coins away. And this is
just the tip of the iceberg.

Regards,

*Carlos Marcano*
-Guri, Venezuela-

** That is another issue: How the hell have we managed to be the fifth oil
exporter in the world and be so poor? Corruption turned us into poor
people? Or poverty made us corrupt?

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2004\09\24@102515 by Mauricio Jancic

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Yes Carlos, you are sooo right. I do not like "tiping" people on my way
trough but friend and coleagues ask my on some occations "why didn't you tip
him"....

Well, my father, he never changed the owner name for his Jeep, so he always
keeps a 10 bill in his pocket in case the police stops him and says
something... It stupid, I know, I told him so many times, go do that damm
paperwork and you will not have to loose any more money, besides it illegal
to drive your car if all the papers aren't right... He always repplies that
he doesn't have time, he'll go next week...



Mauricio Jancic
Janso Desarrollos
Microchip Consultant Program Member
(54) 11-4542-3519
infospamspam_OUTjanso.com.ar
http://www.janso.com.ar


>>{Original Message removed}

2004\09\24@111919 by Dennis Crawley

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----- Original Message -----
From: "Carlos A. Marcano V.
Sent: Friday, September 24, 2004 10:45 AM
Subject: Re: Re: [OT] Venezuela zero tolerance policy


> ** That is another issue: How the hell have we managed to be the fifth oil
> exporter in the world and be so poor? Corruption turned us into poor
> people? Or poverty made us corrupt?

I'd like to see an american citizen, waking up one morning, opening the
newspaper, and reading, "your bank accounts are mine, the State said", and
you just lost your 32ku$s honestly earned.
With what mood you will pay the next month tax? hug?
Thank you National Bank of Boston for your robery!
That's why we are so anarquist.
Have you ever ask where the progress arround you came from?
Do you still think is because the mere organization of laws, conducts, etc?.
Ok, where the next place to nest the b*mb!... (sorry, :) is the usual way to
think here!)

Well, today is another 20-degrees-shiny day over Buenos Aires. Let's have a
walk, an reset-re-start :). We could have bad goverments,... but we have the
nicest-open people over the world.
Come and enjoy!

Kisses nd huges for everyone! yeah!.

Dennis Carwley
Argentina.


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2004\09\24@124830 by Carlos Marcano

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Pedro Drummond wrote:

> Friends, I am also from Brazil ("z" in english, "s", in
> portuguese)

S Also in spanish.

> and I do not fully agree with this. There is corruption,
> but it was a bigger problem in the past.

My friend, I am really glad to hear that from your country but believe me:
Corruption is VERY VERY VERY FAR from stop being a major problem here in
Venezuela. In fact, I think it has increased every year.

> This thread started because there was the information that in Venezuela
> traffic offenders used to be immediately executed by policemen some years
> ago. With all due respect, there is no way I could believe this. I do not
> know what is the image being spread about Venezuela, and Caracas (I mean,
> because of Chavez), but Venezuela is definitely not a place where
> one might expect such a thing.

I totally agree with you. I was trying to make that clear but somehow the
thread has led us :) to the corruption topic.

By the way I would like to make a survey: What do you piclisters know and
think about Venezuela? Everything you can think about: people, cities,
government, etc.,  but PLEASE send your opinions offlist to carlosmarcano78
at cantv.net. Please, I repeat, OFFLIST! Thanks in advance for your time.

Regards,

*Carlos Marcano*,  proud, after all, of being venezuelan.

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2004\09\24@125456 by Padu

face picon face
It's hard to wonder on the roots of the problem, but a good hypothesis is
generalized lack of money. It would be much harder to bribe a cop who's
giving you a speeding ticket if he had a decent salary.

Padu
.--. .- -.. ..-
{Original Message removed}

2004\09\24@131244 by Padu

face picon face
Ok, I cannot miss the boat of good traditional rivalry

>From Dennis Crawley:
> Well, today is another 20-degrees-shiny day over Buenos Aires. Let's have
a
> walk, an reset-re-start :). We could have bad goverments,... but we have
the
> nicest-open people over the world.

That is a title pertaining to the Brazilian people :-) (and this one we
didn't win on the penalties)

Seriously now, I've heard that Buenos Aires is one of the most beautiful
cities in South America, it's a shame I didn't visit it when I was still
living in Brasil.


Padu

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2004\09\24@135304 by Padu

face picon face
Peter ("Peter" in "E"nglish, "Pedro" in "P"ortuguese ;-) ), unless something
really drastic happened in the last 4 years and all of my friends and
parents are lying to me when we talk, I don't think it has improved a lot.
You can still get away from traffic violations given by officers (as opposed
to the automatic radar-camera ones) and it continues as we go higher on the
government. It's even funny to see the current government (lefttist,
opposition for many many years) to behave exactly as the other governments
that they so dreadfully hated.

Padu
.--. .- -.. ..-
{Original Message removed}

2004\09\24@141737 by Carlos A. Marcano V.

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Padu wrote:

>Peter ("Peter" in "E"nglish, "Pedro" in "P"ortuguese ;-) ), unless
something
>really drastic happened in the last 4 years and all of my friends and
>parents are lying to me when we talk, I don't think it has improved a lot.
>You can still get away from traffic violations given by officers (as
opposed
>to the automatic radar-camera ones) and it continues as we go higher on the
>government. It's even funny to see the current government (lefttist,
>opposition for many many years) to behave exactly as the other governments
>that they so dreadfully hated.

Lettert by letter exactly the same thing here!

Regards,

*Carlos Marcano*
-Guri, Venezuela-


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2004\09\24@152940 by Win Wiencke

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<Pedro Drummond commented in part>

> This thread started because there was the information that in Venezuela
> traffic offenders used to be immediately executed by policemen some years
> ago. With all due respect, there is no way I could believe this.

Five years ago I went from the US to Caracas on a business trip.  The client
sent a car and driver to pick us up.  The driver got in a minor accident.

I expected to see tempers flare.  Instead cell phones were whipped out and
we were calmly put in a taxi.

Later I saw the driver and asked what happened and if he needed witnesses.
"Oh we know the best way to get something done is to settle it ourselves.
Everything's straightened out."  Impressive work-around when the legal
system is inaccessable.

Of course it took US$2,000 in bribes to get an exit visa, but that's another
story.

Win Wiencke
Image Logic Corporation

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2004\09\24@221337 by Rafael Fraga

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Dear Piclisters,
let me make a couple of comments from far away in the south. From Uruguay
Corruption is daunting in the whole continent, and traffic tickets are the
easier way to see it. But here, the real problem is that if your product or
service is better, it doesn´t mind. If you pay the highest "cometa" (bribe),
your product is purchased. In almost every government purchase, bribery is
the way to make business. And a lot of private companies also have the same
problem.
A friend of mine says that, if you don´t work in the same way as the pack,
you are the unadapted. But I still resist to pay bribes to sell something.
On the other hand, if your customs duty taxes are 100% of the item invoice
price plus shipping here, plus expenses, even for a dozen pics mailed to
you, you WILL find cheaper ways to get the merchandise.

The starting point of the thread, about being shot for a traffic infraction,
seems to me quite out of this world, in normal conditions. Maybe part of the
violent public image of south america?
But I heard a story about a physician that, after a little party in his
hospital, drives his car in the wrong direction, forgetting that there was a
navy base next to the hospital, and was shot by the guards because he didn´t
stop the car. I heard this happened in Montevideo, in the seventies. But
there were not normal times, we were in the middle of a counter insurgence
operation, followed by a coup d´etat.

Rafael Fraga


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2004\09\24@222917 by Rafael Fraga

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Also, I´d like to see the same citizen, having to pay about a dollar for a
LITER of gasoline. Of course, this does not include your car property tax,
about 5% of it´s value each year. Nor your insurance.

Rafael Fraga


{Original Message removed}

2004\09\24@225342 by Marcel Duchamp

picon face
I replied to Carlos vis-a-vis his request for a survey about his country.  I would hope many will respond.

Now, after reading Rafael Fraga's posting, I am reminded about a site I found only last week. I am curious as to what Rafael and others might have to say about the music found at:

        http://www.bajofondotangoclub.com/

The site carries this message:

"For Argentina and Uruguay (the countries united -and separated- by the Río de la Plata), these are times of electricity and tango. Lots of tango. And I don't mean tourist tango, I mean real tango, the one that's part of the rioplatense blood system, the one that makes us melancholic, nostalgic or plain sad. The tango that makes us want to dance, laugh and make love. The treasure box for memories too hurtful to remember, too sweet to forget."


As for me, I like this music very much. Try it yourself!
MD

ps: you may need shockwave flash installed to access the music; I'm not sure.



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2004\09\25@015736 by Russell McMahon

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> It's hard to wonder on the roots of the problem, but a good hypothesis is
> generalized lack of money. It would be much harder to bribe a cop who's
> giving you a speeding ticket if he had a decent salary.

It is much more likely that people will have decent salaries in countries
where bribery is treated as a major crime. There is only so much resource to
go around in any given situation. The choice is to try and utilise the
resource equitably according to formal rules that apply to all people, or to
have an informal set of "rules" that allow people to gain secret advantages
over others. No system is perfect, but those which have more formal and
universally applicable rules generate more "wealth" per resource than those
which don't. A poor country has a far far better chance (ie SOME chance) of
becoming richer without bribes than with.


       RM

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2004\09\25@063021 by Howard Winter

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Rafael,

On Sat, 25 Sep 2004 00:30:32 -0300, Rafael Fraga wrote:

> Also, I d like to see the same citizen, having to pay
about a dollar for a LITER of gasoline.

Well just to let you know, in Britain it's about 80p a
litre - at the current exchange rate that's about
US$1.44 !

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England



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2004\09\25@083420 by Mauricio Jancic

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Yes, but I think the problem is not how much fuel costs, but how much that
is with respect of the income and, for example, the cost of food. Here in
Argentina, the income is in PESOS (0.3 x Dollar) It means that when you
export something you make a good deal, you can charge something "cheap" for
the buyer and it will be a little more money than if you sale that
service/product "in house"...
Let's compare prices. For example:

1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7
1 PIC18F452: U$S 8.3 (low qtys)
1 400W power supply for a PC (biswal or anything like that): U$S 14
1 liter of bear (national) : U$S .56
1 bottle of coke (2.25 L) : U$S 0.83
1 McDonald's BIG MAC : U$S 2.15
1 CD-R (TDK 700MB) : U$S 0.50
1 Liter of milk : U$S .45
1 Kg of bread : U$S .60

Anyone want to compare prices?


Mauricio Jancic
Janso Desarrollos
Microchip Consultant Program Member
(54) 11-4542-3519
@spam@infoKILLspamspamjanso.com.ar
http://www.janso.com.ar


>>{Original Message removed}

2004\09\25@090142 by Peter L. Peres

picon face

On Fri, 24 Sep 2004, Padu wrote:

> It's hard to wonder on the roots of the problem, but a good hypothesis is
> generalized lack of money. It would be much harder to bribe a cop who's
> giving you a speeding ticket if he had a decent salary.

Very often it is not lack of money but misappropriation thereof. The most
horendous cases of corruption occur in countries that regularly tax their
citizens to death. Whether by system (communist or military dictature
f.ex.), or democratically (fill in the dots - you know who you are).

Peter
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2004\09\25@092953 by jrem

picon face
> In a way, corruption is the essence of capitalism, isn't it?

no, corruption disrupts true market forces, i.e., price collusion sets
the market instead of the supply/demand chain setting the market.

> Everything has
> its price, determined by "the market"... Anything else is just
> stinkin'
> communism :)

there are monopolies and oligopolies that have the ability to set
pricing, and they are not necessarily communistic.  Think AT&T.  That
should still be a monopoly, Judge Green didn't know jack about
economics.




               
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2004\09\25@093626 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
> It's hard to wonder on the roots of the problem,

Definitely... and it's IMO not one problem, it's a complex interaction of
many characteristics.

> but a good hypothesis is generalized lack of money. It would be much
> harder to bribe a cop who's giving you a speeding ticket if he had a
> decent salary.

Another characteristic that IMO is important is some kind of caste system,
something that makes a feeling of equality (before the law and otherwise)
pretty much impossible. This then results in an overall attitude towards
the law that is fundamentally different from basically middle-class
societies like in Western Europe, the USA and Canada (and probably
Australia and NZ -- never been there :).

Gerhard
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2004\09\25@094021 by Russell McMahon

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New Zealand
All prices in $US equivalent.
Some of these may be a bit rough.
Your prices look pretty good in many cases! ;-)

0.85      > 1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7
?           > 1 PIC18F452: U$S 8.3 (low qtys)
25        > 1 400W power supply for a PC (biswal or anything like that): U$S
14
1.40      > 1 liter of bear (national) : U$S .56
1.40     > 1 bottle of coke (2.25 L) : U$S 0.83
2.40    > 1 McDonald's BIG MAC : U$S 2.15
0.70    > 1 CD-R (TDK 700MB) : U$S 0.50
0.85    > 1 Liter of milk : U$S .45
1.00    > 1 Kg of bread : U$S .60


       RM

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2004\09\25@101013 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
> Peter ("Peter" in "E"nglish, "Pedro" in "P"ortuguese ;-) ), unless something
> really drastic happened in the last 4 years and all of my friends and
> parents are lying to me when we talk, I don't think it has improved a lot.
> You can still get away from traffic violations given by officers (as opposed
> to the automatic radar-camera ones) and it continues as we go higher on the
> government.

It's probably not there yet, but I think it improved a lot over the 12 or
so years I know (and partly live in) Brazil. IMO one of the most important
influences was the end of the hyperinflation. Since the mid-90ies it is
possible to actually compare prizes, plan financially, and make people
(public officers) account for their money.

This has had a big effect on bribery, IMO. People start to realize that
there's power in making other people do the right thing. It's still mostly
in the attitude towards the government -- and mostly when the "other ones"
are doing the bribing :) --, but I think the general attitude is changing.
Slowly, but still. (But then, I'm speaking from the State of Sao Paulo, the
overall richest and most middle-class state in the country.)

Gerhard
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2004\09\25@101138 by Russell McMahon

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>> OTOH, I've heard people from countries where corruption is rife
>> complaining that there is no way to make things happen with money in
>> countries like the US/Canada/UK.

> In a way, corruption is the essence of capitalism, isn't it? Everything
> has
> its price, determined by "the market"... Anything else is just stinkin'
> communism :)

This might be true if the corruption was totally open and visible to all and
equally accessible to all. At least at a simplistic level of analysis
"Market forces" are presumed AFAIK to apply to the whole market. If eg all
people seeking passports urgently, have equal access to all people who are
offering corrupt means of getting them, and if the asking price of all
corrupt suppliers are known to all, then the 'magic' forces of competition
apply and you just end up with stinking capitalism. [:-)]

But if the corrupt suppliers work in essential secrecy and the applicants
do not have access to information relating to the prices of all offerers
then "anomalies" occur. This is far closer to what really happens. In
practice it seems like the anomalies are large.

Ideal Capitalism assumes that the system's rules are obeyed by all. Ideal
corruption has trouble working out with any certainty what a rule is.


       RM

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2004\09\25@234436 by Joe Jansen

picon face
South Carolina, US....  Most things are sold by gallon, but using the
google-supplied multiplier to get to litres....

> New Zealand

>
0.46  > 0.85      > 1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7
?     > ?           > 1 PIC18F452: U$S 8.3 (low qtys)
>    > 25        > 1 400W power supply for a PC (biswal or anything like that): U$S
> 14
1.25  > 1.40      > 1 liter of bear (national) : U$S .56
0.99  > 1.40     > 1 bottle of coke (2.25 L) : U$S 0.83
2.50   > 2.40    > 1 McDonald's BIG MAC : U$S 2.15
0.24   > 0.70    > 1 CD-R (TDK 700MB) : U$S 0.50
0.85   > 0.85    > 1 Liter of milk : U$S .45
0.45   > 1.00    > 1 Kg of bread : U$S .60
>
>
>         RM

Not sure on the PIC or the power supply.  CDR is based on buying a
stack or 50 for about $12.
--Joe
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2004\09\26@023810 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
On Sep 25, 2004, at 8:44 PM, Joe Jansen wrote:

> 0.99  > 1.40     > 1 bottle of coke (2.25 L) : U$S 0.83

Are bottles of coke REALLY 2.25l elsewhere?  In the decidedly non-metric
USofA, they're two-liters even (also 1l and 3l.  Smaller bottles tend to
be in ounces.)  It's also one of those items that's hard to price.  MSRP
is something like $2.29, but it's almost ALWAYS "on sale" somewhere at
prices between $0.99 and $1.89.

0.45   > 1.00    > 1 Kg of bread : U$S .60

Hmm.  What kind of bread is that?  Our "every day" sandwich bread runs
about $3/kg (28oz loaf, actually), but it's one of those "gourmet"
breads.  100% whole wheat, yadda yadda...  Regular "white bread" is
cheaper (per loaf, anyway), and a 1kb loaf of french bread is about $1.

BillW

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2004\09\26@062349 by Howard Winter

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On Sat, 25 Sep 2004 23:44:36 -0400, Joe Jansen wrote:

> South Carolina, US....  Most things are sold by gallon, but using the
> google-supplied multiplier to get to litres....

Well these are the prices I pay, including tax (the usual way to do it here - none of this paying $3.20 for a $2.99 burger that I've seen in the US!  :-)  All converted to US$ at $1.80 = £1 which may be a tad high at the moment, but was about right a couple of weeks ago.

UK > South Carolina > New Zealand > ...... Mauricio Jancic (Argentina?)
> 1.44  > 0.46  > 0.85    > 1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7
15.28 > ?     > ?       > 1 PIC18F452: U$S 8.3 (low qtys)
63.00 >       > 25      > 1 400W power supply for a PC (biswal or anything like that): U$S14
6.50  > 1.25  > 1.40    > 1 liter of bear (national) : U$S .56
2.50  > 0.99  > 1.40    > 1 bottle of coke (2.25 L) : U$S 0.83
5.00  > 2.50  > 2.40    > 1 McDonald's BIG MAC : U$S 2.15
0.30  > 0.24  > 0.70    > 1 CD-R (TDK 700MB) : U$S 0.50
1.26  > 0.85  > 0.85    > 1 Liter of milk : U$S .45
1.39  > 0.45  > 1.00    > 1 Kg of bread : U$S .60

Notes:  Where I mention "pint" below, I mean an Imperial pint, which is 20fl.oz (25% larger than a US pint, I think).

The fuel price is for the cheapest ("Unleaded", also the most popular) at my local supermarket - it's more bit more expensive in most other places, and up to 10% more at Motorway services!  Diesel is a penny a litre more.

The prices for the PIC and the PC PSU are from the Maplin catalogue - I'd never buy these from there!  The PIC '452 I'd get mail-order ($12.39 from Wouter (quickest) or $6.97 from Glitchbuster).  I would get the PC PSU from a computer fair, for about $30.

I presume "bear" is "beer"!  :-)  It's not sold in litres - I've scaled-up the price of a bottle of Fuller's "London Pride" at a supermarket.  This is definately a high-end Real Ale!  In a pub it would be about $4 a pint, about $7 a litre.  You can get beer much cheaper than this, though...

Coke isn't sold in 2.25l bottles - this is for a 2l bottle scaled up.  There are normally 2-for-1 or other offers going, though.  In single 0.33l cans you can pay anything from $0.70 to $1.25 ($2.10 to $3.75 a litre).

I'm guessing the Big Mac - I haven't had one for years, but I think this is about right.  Again, they would be more expensive at Motorway Services.

CD-R is from a computer fair, as part of a 50-CD stack.

Milk is delivered to the door in 1pt reusable glass bottles.  It would be cheaper in throwaway plastic bottles from a supermarket.

Bread is sold here in 400g & 800g loaves.  This is scaled up from an 800g Wholemeal loaf from a national Supermarket chain (baked on the premises).  From a local bakery it would cost about 50% more.

It looks like it's expensive to live here!  I'm a tad surprised at the size of the differences, but some of this is due to the US$ being weak at the moment (or is it the UK£ is strong?  I don't know how you tell the difference).

I'd be interested to see what prices are like on Continental Europe...

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England



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2004\09\26@075125 by Russell McMahon

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> UK > South Carolina > New Zealand > ...... Mauricio Jancic (Argentina?)

> 1.44  > 0.46  > 0.85    > 1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7

I think the US petro price is wrong and low.
A year ago it was about equal to NZ pricing and I doubt things have changed too much in their favour.
May be some confusion with US gallons and imperial gallons.
I think a US gallon is about 3.5 litres?
Imperial is 4.54 litres.

> CD-R is from a computer fair, as part of a 50-CD stack.

$NZ was for 1 off of reasonable brand.
Can halve that in 50 stack so similar to US and UK.

To make these interesting comparisons usefula s well they would ideally be soemwhat more standardised.

Big Mac IS the standard of course :-)
Fuel is close but should perhaps specify the Octane or something similar.

> It looks like it's expensive to live here!  I'm a tad surprised at the
> size of the differences, but some of
> this is due to the US$ being weak at the moment (or is it the UK£ is
> strong?  I don't know how you tell the
> difference).


On our many country trip the UK was about as dear as anywhere we went for many things. Some things were good. Camping site for 2 or 3 always took a bit of thinking by the manager and then they always said "10 pounds".



       RM


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2004\09\26@085951 by Howard Winter

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Russell,

On Sun, 26 Sep 2004 23:29:49 +1200, Russell McMahon wrote:

> > UK > South Carolina > New Zealand > ...... Mauricio Jancic (Argentina?)
>
> > 1.44  > 0.46  > 0.85    > 1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7
>
> I think the US petro price is wrong and low.
> A year ago it was about equal to NZ pricing and I doubt things have changed
> too much in their favour.

I don't know - $0.46 /litre is about $1.60 a US gallon, and I think this is in the right area, but it does vary geographically in the US, much more than here (or there!).  I've seen it from $1.35 to $1.95 / USgall on my past couple of Stateside visits (5 and 10 months ago).

> > CD-R is from a computer fair, as part of a 50-CD stack.
>
> $NZ was for 1 off of reasonable brand.
> Can halve that in 50 stack so similar to US and UK.

Right - it's up to 3x that price for 1-off-in-case here, depending on brand and where you buy it.

> To make these interesting comparisons usefula s well they would ideally be
> soemwhat more standardised.
>
> Big Mac IS the standard of course :-)

LOL!  A tad unrepresentative of the cost of living, though!...  Things like Bread don't work because there is a vast range of different types, and most of those available here aren't in the US (or even across 21 miles of sea in France :-)

> Fuel is close but should perhaps specify the Octane or something similar.

Again, differences of measurement (RON vs MON).  And since we went unleaded, the octane number has largely disappeared because most people use the lowest/cheapest.  Only a very few vehicles need anything higher.  Diesel should be interesting though, because I don't think it has grades.  It used to be much cheaper than petrol here, but nowadays it's very slightly more expensive (blame the taxes there!).

As for services, I pay a tad under £30 (say US$50) for a month's 512/256 ADSL.  You can get it at about £20 ($36) from some suppliers, but they have download limits and other restrictions that my ISP doesn't.

> On our many country trip the UK was about as dear as anywhere we went for
> many things.
You obviously didn't go drinking in Scandinavia then - I understand it's a *lot* more expensive than here.  I seem to remember that the Netherlands is very similar to here for a lot of things, but I haven't spent much time there.

> Some things were good. Camping site for 2 or 3 always took a
> bit of thinking by the manager and then they always said "10 pounds".

LOL!  This doesn't help this survey much though  :-)

The exchange rate makes it very attractive to buy things from the USA at the moment.  I've bought battery-powered tools by DeWalt recently from US eBay sellers, and they are about half the price (all in, including shipping and such) of the cheapest here - for the identical item.

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England



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2004\09\26@095623 by Joe Jansen

picon face
On Sun, 26 Sep 2004 23:29:49 +1200, Russell McMahon
<KILLspamapptechKILLspamspamparadise.net.nz> wrote:
> > UK > South Carolina > New Zealand > ...... Mauricio Jancic (Argentina?)
>
> > 1.44  > 0.46  > 0.85    > 1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7
>
> I think the US petro price is wrong and low.
> A year ago it was about equal to NZ pricing and I doubt things have changed
> too much in their favour.


Gas is currently $1.73 / US Gallon, for regular unleaded (89 Octane).
High Octane (94 Octane) is about $1.89 / US gallon.

Google tells me that 1 gallon is 3.7854118 litres (approx. :^}  ),
which gives about 45.7 cents per litre for the regular.

Keep in mind that prices fluctuate across the US, and are over $2 /
Gallon (or so I hear) out west.  That is why I specified the state.
Georgia is slightly less yet than us, I think.....

--Joe Jansen
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2004\09\26@102336 by Russell McMahon

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flavicon
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> Diesel should be interesting though, because I don't think it has grades.
> It used to be much cheaper than
> petrol here, but nowadays it's very slightly more expensive (blame the
> taxes there!).

Diesel here is about 60%-70% price of petrol
We noted that it was derarer than petrol in UK.
We have a separate mileage based road tax for diesel vehicles.


       RM


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2004\09\26@114131 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
>> In a way, corruption is the essence of capitalism, isn't it? Everything
>> has its price, determined by "the market"... Anything else is just
>> stinkin' communism :)
>
> This might be true if the corruption was totally open and visible to all and
> equally accessible to all. At least at a simplistic level of analysis
> "Market forces" are presumed AFAIK to apply to the whole market. If eg all
> people seeking passports urgently, have equal access to all people who are
> offering corrupt means of getting them, and if the asking price of all
> corrupt suppliers are known to all, then the 'magic' forces of competition
> apply and you just end up with stinking capitalism. [:-)]

But that's not a given for most items. According to that description of
when a product or service is marketed in a capitalist way, there are very
few situations where this actually applies.

"have equal access to all people who are offering": This is in general not
given. Usually people in rural areas (of the same country, or even the same
county) have not the same access as people in more central areas. People
with a computer and internet access have better access to products than
people without. And so on... I'm sure you know what I'm talking about.

"the asking price of all corrupt suppliers are known to all": For most
large quantity or large value items, prices are usually negotiated behind
closed doors, usually without the negotiators knowing how much other buyers
of the negotiating seller have paid or offered, or what other offers the
negotiating buyer has.

So if these are considered "normal" capitalist situations, the "corrupt
passport offer" situation is probably also. At least I don't see a
difference in essence between it and most plain "normal capitalist"
situations, where neither equal access to offers nor to pricing (and other)
information about products or services is given.


> But if the corrupt suppliers work in essential secrecy and the applicants
> do not have access to information relating to the prices of all offerers
> then "anomalies" occur.

This is the normal situation in most capitalist societies, as far as most
products and services go. Pretty much all large quantity (or large value)
deals are negotiated behind closed doors and never published. Or do you
think it would be easy to find out how much your favorite large supermarket
chain pays for its products?

> Ideal Capitalism assumes that the system's rules are obeyed by all.

Isn't part of "ideal capitalism" the minimization of rules, and having the
market forces take over the place of arbitrary rules?

> Ideal corruption has trouble working out with any certainty what a rule
> is.

Not really. It seems to you, because they are not written down, and they
are not familiar to you. But for people who live with them, they know them
just as well as you know your rules. People in such places have usually a
pretty clear opinion about when, whom, how, and how much to bribe.

Gerhard
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2004\09\26@211051 by Rafael Fraga

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----- Original Message -----
From: Gerhard Fiedler <RemoveMElistsTakeThisOuTspamconnectionbrazil.com>
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public. <spamBeGonepiclistspamBeGonespammit.edu>
Sent: Sunday, September 26, 2004 12:41 PM
Subject: Re: [OT] Venezuela zero tolerance policy


> >> In a way, corruption is the essence of capitalism, isn't it? Everything
> >> has its price, determined by "the market"... Anything else is just
> >> stinkin' communism :)
> >
> > This might be true if the corruption was totally open and visible to all
and
> > equally accessible to all. At least at a simplistic level of analysis
> > "Market forces" are presumed AFAIK to apply to the whole market. If eg
all
> > people seeking passports urgently, have equal access to all people who
are
> > offering corrupt means of getting them, and if the asking price of all
> > corrupt suppliers are known to all, then the 'magic' forces of
competition
> > apply and you just end up with stinking capitalism. [:-)]
>
> But that's not a given for most items. According to that description of
> when a product or service is marketed in a capitalist way, there are very
> few situations where this actually applies.
>
> "have equal access to all people who are offering": This is in general not
> given. Usually people in rural areas (of the same country, or even the
same
> county) have not the same access as people in more central areas. People
> with a computer and internet access have better access to products than
> people without. And so on... I'm sure you know what I'm talking about.
>
> "the asking price of all corrupt suppliers are known to all": For most
> large quantity or large value items, prices are usually negotiated behind
> closed doors, usually without the negotiators knowing how much other
buyers
> of the negotiating seller have paid or offered, or what other offers the
> negotiating buyer has.
>
> So if these are considered "normal" capitalist situations, the "corrupt
> passport offer" situation is probably also. At least I don't see a
> difference in essence between it and most plain "normal capitalist"
> situations, where neither equal access to offers nor to pricing (and
other)
> information about products or services is given.
>
>
> > But if the corrupt suppliers work in essential secrecy and the
applicants
> > do not have access to information relating to the prices of all offerers
> > then "anomalies" occur.

The great anomaly here is that, state has a monopoly for making passports.
And as we know, monopolies goes against real capitalism theory.
Usually, the problem is not knowing who to tip to get your passport,
but having enough money to do it. Incredible as it sounds, they (the "magic
person") will
let you know clearly, if you understand the message, that he is the one to
talk to.


> This is the normal situation in most capitalist societies, as far as most
> products and services go. Pretty much all large quantity (or large value)
> deals are negotiated behind closed doors and never published. Or do you
> think it would be easy to find out how much your favorite large
supermarket
{Quote hidden}

Correct. Just looking at the face or the body language of the traffic police
will tell you,
not only if he accepts a bribe, but also the price.

Rafael Fraga


> Gerhard
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2004\09\26@232924 by Russell McMahon

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> but having enough money to do it. Incredible as it sounds, they (the
> "magic
> person") will let you know clearly, if you understand the message, that he
> is the one to
> talk to.

That's not capitalism.
Or justice.
Or useful to having a country get ahead.

> Correct. Just looking at the face or the body language of the traffic
> police
> will tell you, not only if he accepts a bribe, but also the price.

Same again.
Some police will. Some won't.
Price varies according to ?
You can choose to buy injustice, or not.


The existence and effective acceptance of such 'systems' cripples a country.



       Russell McMahon


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2004\09\27@073046 by bruce

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I'd like to weigh in on this to say that in the last 26 years I've been
working in Brazil, day to day corruption has been reduced a LOT, to the
point where I haven't been asked for a bribe for over 15 years.

However, I attribute this to the effort the government has made to
simplify paperwork and have clearer methods of getting the papers you
need. When people have a clear, legal way to get things done, they do it
legally.

It seems that the upper level corruption has declined too. When you
arrest a few people in a few cases it sure makes the other people sit up
and take notice that society isn't as tolerant as it once was, (even
though you never seem to arrest the really important people).
It has been a quite a while since we've seen a major Enron type scandal
around here.

What Gerhard said about the end of hyper-inflation is important. When
you had 30% inflation a month, there was no way of having good,
efficient auditing. It was very easy for companies to hide money from
their official accounting systems and then have it available for
corruption. It's not impossible now, of course, but it is harder to do
and easier to catch.

I think that the main problem is in the mid level where city regulations
and procedures are still complicated for businesses and it is a
temptation to settle things the quick way (the corrupt one).

But where some postings here have given the impression that corruption
is an inevitable downward spiral, I would disagree: it has been possible
to improve. Without shooting people!

Bruce Douglas
Sao Paulo, Brazil

p.s. When I was working on a large purchase order for my company 20
years ago, I was offered 2 kickbacks. On one, the Brailian mentioned
that in his prices he had included a percentage which could be a
commission for me or a discount for my company. I was able to choose the
discount and do business correctly.
On the other occasion, a Belgian kept insisting I take a kickback and
when I refused kept asking what my price was. He would try to call my
boss directly so he could bribe him but my boss just kept referring him
back to me. It seemed that he just assumed that since he was in Brazil
he had to bribe someone and if he didn't he hadn't found the right
person or the right price. It was very unpleasant.

p.p.s. Nothing personal about Belgians, his nationality is just
important in that he was from the first world and made assumptions about
the third world.


Gerhard Fiedler wrote:
{Quote hidden}

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2004\09\27@135818 by Peter L. Peres

picon face

On Sat, 25 Sep 2004, Mauricio Jancic wrote:

> Yes, but I think the problem is not how much fuel costs, but how much that
> is with respect of the income and, for example, the cost of food. Here in
> Argentina, the income is in PESOS (0.3 x Dollar) It means that when you
> export something you make a good deal, you can charge something "cheap" for
> the buyer and it will be a little more money than if you sale that
> service/product "in house"...
> Let's compare prices. For example:
>
> 1 Liter of The best quality fuel: U$S .7
> 1 PIC18F452: U$S 8.3 (low qtys)
> 1 400W power supply for a PC (biswal or anything like that): U$S 14
> 1 liter of bear (national) : U$S .56
> 1 bottle of coke (2.25 L) : U$S 0.83
> 1 McDonald's BIG MAC : U$S 2.15
> 1 CD-R (TDK 700MB) : U$S 0.50
> 1 Liter of milk : U$S .45
> 1 Kg of bread : U$S .60
>
> Anyone want to compare prices?

The prices you quoted are meaningless unless you quote the net income of a
number of types of family (not *NET* income after taxes!!!).

Peter
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2004\09\27@142823 by Mauricio Jancic

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Look at the other messages under de subject:

Re: [OT] Living cost, units, currencies and bread...

regards

Mauricio Jancic
Janso Desarrollos
Microchip Consultant Program Member
(54) 11-4542-3519
TakeThisOuTinfoEraseMEspamspam_OUTjanso.com.ar
http://www.janso.com.ar


>>{Original Message removed}

2004\09\28@030245 by Russell McMahon

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> The prices you quoted are meaningless unless you quote the net income of a
> number of types of family (not *NET* income after taxes!!!).

This is why the "Big Mac" standard evolved :-)
The affordability of a Big Mac is said to allow easy comparison of real
incomes.
Cost of a Big Mac relative to other goods establishes their price.
Obviously an empirical and rough method. But the fairly universal
availability of a standardised product and the fact that t is probably sold
at a price which is deemed to optimise profit in any given market gives it
some usefulness.


       RM



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2004\09\28@031543 by dr. Imre Bartfai

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Hi,

in Hungary, you should bribe the most of physicians (unless you have a
friend or at least a neighbour which is also a doctor). Of course, the
medical care is free (with some exception), but if you don't pay and
returns to the same speciman then chances are high that you will have a
BIG problem. Most gynecologists expect approx. a monthly salary after a
successfull birth (or higher if there are complications). Officially it is
called as "payment of thanksgiving" but I will call "tax of fear". Of
course it is apologized with low salaries which is true, but I make the
same money and I (and most citizens) have no such expectations (even not
all physicians). Pathologists, radiologists, anasthesiologists won't be
"thankgiven", but surgeons, gynecologists will. This amount is also
"black" as you could not subtract from tax and the receivers also pay no
tax for them and they do not give a receipt.

Imre

On Sat, 25 Sep 2004, Russell McMahon wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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2004\09\28@054439 by Howard Winter

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Imre,

On Tue, 28 Sep 2004 09:33:49 +0200 (CEST), dr. Imre Bartfai wrote:

> Hi,
>
> in Hungary, you should bribe the most of physicians (unless you have a
> friend or at least a neighbour which is also a doctor). Of course, the
> medical care is free (with some exception), but if you don't pay and
> returns to the same speciman then chances are high that you will have a
> BIG problem.

I think this demostrates better than I ever could why corruption is *such* a bad thing, and why it needs to be
stamped out wherever possible.


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


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2004\09\28@160854 by Richard.Prosser

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But then, even in the USA, taxi drivers and waiters expect a "bribe" of
about 10% to 15% if you want to retain good service.
So where does bribing stop and tipping start?

(Here in NZ tipping is reserved for exceptional service, if then)

RP



Hi,

in Hungary, you should bribe the most of physicians (unless you have a
friend or at least a neighbour which is also a doctor). Of course, the
medical care is free (with some exception), but if you don't pay and
returns to the same speciman then chances are high that you will have a
BIG problem. Most gynecologists expect approx. a monthly salary after a
successfull birth (or higher if there are complications). Officially it is
called as "payment of thanksgiving" but I will call "tax of fear". Of
course it is apologized with low salaries which is true, but I make the
same money and I (and most citizens) have no such expectations (even not
all physicians). Pathologists, radiologists, anasthesiologists won't be
"thankgiven", but surgeons, gynecologists will. This amount is also
"black" as you could not subtract from tax and the receivers also pay no
tax for them and they do not give a receipt.

Imre





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2004\09\28@200225 by Howard Winter

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Richard,

On Wed, 29 Sep 2004 08:03:18 +1200, RemoveMERichard.ProsserspamTakeThisOuTPowerware.com wrote:

> But then, even in the USA, taxi drivers and waiters expect a "bribe" of
> about 10% to 15% if you want to retain good service.
> So where does bribing stop and tipping start?

I'm not quite sure I agree with your statement "to retain good service" - tipping a waiter in a place you'll
be going back to I can see, but a taxi driver?  How often would you see the same one again?

> (Here in NZ tipping is reserved for exceptional service, if then)

In the UK it's expected that you'll tip taxi drivers (I really don't know why), the others (waiters,
hairdressers) if you think the service merits it.  Bar staff: never!

Incidentally, "Trick or treat":  I think that falls under the offence of "demanding money with menaces"!  :-)

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


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2004\09\28@210029 by Mike Hord

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> > But then, even in the USA, taxi drivers and waiters expect a "bribe" of
> > about 10% to 15% if you want to retain good service.
> > So where does bribing stop and tipping start?

Bribing starts before delivery, tipping starts after.  ;-)

> I'm not quite sure I agree with your statement "to retain good service" - tipping a waiter in a place you'll
> be going back to I can see, but a taxi driver?  How often would you see the same one again?
>
> > (Here in NZ tipping is reserved for exceptional service, if then)
>
> In the UK it's expected that you'll tip taxi drivers (I really don't know why), the others (waiters,
> hairdressers) if you think the service merits it.  Bar staff: never!
>
> Incidentally, "Trick or treat":  I think that falls under the offence of "demanding money with menaces"!  :-)

I'm really uncomfortable with tipping in general, beyond hairdressers
and waitstaff.
Waitstaff is quite easy, for me:  10% for poor service, 15% for average, 20% for
exceptional.  I tend to tip hairdressers more the less the try to
interact with me.

Beyond that I'm lost.  Do I tip the gasoline attendant 15% of my gas costs?  Or
a cab driver?  Not that I take taxis that often.

In general, I'm not opposed to tipping.  Although it should be noticed
that tipping
is factored into the salaries of those in tippable jobs- Waitstaff around here
typically make less than $4 an hour.

Mike H.
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2004\09\28@213158 by Russell McMahon

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>> (Here in NZ tipping is reserved for exceptional service, if then)

Principally in restaurants.

> Incidentally, "Trick or treat":  I think that falls under the offence of
> "demanding money with menaces"!  :-)

Given the background to the celebration, it's probably what you would
expect.
In some places (some Caribbean islands?) it's called "Devils day" and is an
occasion for generally larcenous behaviour. Has been known to get out of
hand.

Brief mention here www.gowealthy.com/scripts/info.asp?aid=405
where it sounds somewhat more benign.



       RM

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2004\09\29@120247 by No Religion

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At 09.33 2004.09.28 +0200, you wrote:
>Hi,
>
>in Hungary, you should bribe the most of physicians (unless you have a
>friend or at least a neighbour which is also a doctor). Of course, the
>medical care is free (with some exception), but if you don't pay and
>returns to the same speciman then chances are high that you will have a
>BIG problem.

Just curious, was it so also under the Communist era?

Greets,
N.R.

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'[OT] Venezuela zero tolerance policy'
2004\10\01@044946 by No Religion
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On Tue, 28 Sep 2004 09:33:49 +0200 (CEST), dr. Imre Bartfai wrote:

> Hi,
>
> in Hungary, you should bribe the most of physicians (unless you have a
> friend or at least a neighbour which is also a doctor). Of course, the
> medical care is free (with some exception), but if you don't pay and
> returns to the same speciman then chances are high that you will have a
> BIG problem.

Just curious, was it so also under the communism era?

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2004\10\01@134742 by dr. Imre Bartfai

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Hi,

unfortunately, indeed. It begun at 50s as the regime did not pay the
physicians as they deserved but they allowed the patients "to express
their gratefullness". And as a cancer, it became unavoidable and
widespread. The wages also recently miserable. As example:

- gross national average total pro month $700
- my salary (assistant professor, 48)    $1000
- average for finances (incl. clerks, recepcionists etc= $1600
- a beginner MD                                 $600

Prices are the same as otherwise in Europe maybe even higher with one
exception: used old flat are cheaper. I will join to the tread with some
prices if I could collect data (I don't drink coke or eat big mac :-)))
But that for beer:
     one liter local beer: $1
     one liter gas       : $1.20
     one cinema ticket   : $7 (it depends)
     2 pound of bread:   : $0.70 (YMMV)
     1 kg sausages:      : $1-$7 (the cheap with half of soya)
     1 kWh current       : $0.13

The VAT is almost generally 25% (sad).

Regards,
Imre


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