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Another One Bites the Dust?
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ohman



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 239
Location: B' Um Fouk, Egypt

PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 12:54 pm    Post subject: Situation Vacant--Dependable Locals Urged to Apply Reply with quote

I wonder if Dubai is regarded only as sin city by these young turks--the future upwardly mobile that many of us teach in banking institutes, at KFUPM, Aramco, and within the various officer corps. Sure, the mutawa sit in these classes, but my experience has been only in lower digit percentages.

Dubai buys a lot of air time on Saudi satellite TV advertising in Arabic their 5 - 7 star hotels (I'd thought 5 was the maximum), their shopping festivals, world class sporting events, Global Village, on and on.

I imagine that it's the early 1960's, and here in kingdom I'm stranded in something akin to rural Mississippi while in the UAE they're all having their dreams--not so much about equality but opportunity.


Last edited by ohman on Sun Jan 18, 2004 2:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12458
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 2:17 pm    Post subject: Stop the madness Reply with quote

Ah, this brings back memories of pre-Iraqi invasion times: a Tom Friedman column I can agree with (well, pretty much, anyway):

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/18/opinion/18FRIE.html?th

Regards,
John
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ohman



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 239
Location: B' Um Fouk, Egypt

PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 2:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John,
It is interesting for me to go back to an article like that by Friedman now that I am back in kingdom, this time on the left coast.

I sense its not just Saudi slackers who are still at home with their parents in their mid-to-late twenties. Unlike our US slacker minded younger generation, these fellas here aren't ready to start flipping burgers with a college degree.
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12458
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 2:47 pm    Post subject: Burger Peon Reply with quote

Dear ohman,

"these fellas here aren't ready to start flipping burgers with a college degree."

Hmm, I would think a spatula might work better. Seriously though, the unemployment problem is one of the most pressing facing the House of Saud. And, as you mentioned, it IS a problem in large measure because many young Saudi males are highly adverse to "starting at the bottom on the ladder" and gradually working their way up. It's not just low salary that's the deterrent, I'd say - perhaps even more it's what would be seen as the "loss of face" involved in taking a menial job. So far, all the attempts that I'm aware of to "Saudi-ize" (there's really no good way to spell this in English) low level employment have failed, and
I doubt any further ones will make an appreciable dent in the unemployment figures. Is there any "short-term solution"? I certainly can't see one.
Regards,
John
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ohman



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 239
Location: B' Um Fouk, Egypt

PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 12:46 pm    Post subject: Desertranian Home Sick Blues Reply with quote

As Bobby Zimmerman once smirked: "Join the army if you fail"
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12458
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 1:33 pm    Post subject: Uncle Abdullah wants YOU! Reply with quote

Dear ohman,
The armed services - as a solution to the unemployment of young Saudi males - was a possibility I'd considered, but then rejected for two main reasons:

1. I don't think the armed services could absorb enough of them to make too much of a difference in the figures. That is, after all, just another "government job", and there are already far too many Saudis depending on the government to provide them with a paycheck. Moreover, the House of Saud might be a little nervous about providing more and more people with military training and access to firepower.

2. I don't think life in the armed services would appeal to all that many young Saudi males, despite the many "benefits" attached to the job.

Regards,
John
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ohman



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 239
Location: B' Um Fouk, Egypt

PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 1:55 pm    Post subject: Wake up call Reply with quote

John, you have a point about young Saudis and how it's probably best to restrict their numbers in the military and their access fire power.

However, if a young Saudi really wants firepower, all he has to do is sneak up on one of the four guard towers surrounding my compound while the soldier on duty is having his nap--so long as the thief is polite enough not to wake the guard.
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12458
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 2:36 pm    Post subject: Who guards the guards? Reply with quote

Dear ohman,
How true - before I left in July of 2003, I had the chance to see a good number of "guards" dozing behind their weapons, including those deployed in front of the US embassy in the Riyadh DQ. I wonder if chaining them to the M-60s, etc. would be advisable. Of course, that might just mean the thief would simply steal the guard, too.
Regards,
John
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ohman



Joined: 09 Sep 2003
Posts: 239
Location: B' Um Fouk, Egypt

PostPosted: Tue Jan 20, 2004 3:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

John--HA!
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MindTraveller



Joined: 13 Mar 2003
Posts: 89
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2004 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, the President of the UAE is Sheik Zeyad. He is elected every five years by participation with all the Emirates. (I don't know how it's done.)

The presidency is to rotate among the Emirates. Dubai is next in line, but for some reason, everyone keeps voting for Sheik Zeyad. So yes, people are holding their breath. Still, I would bet it goes to the Dubai sheik without war, etc. because, in their hearts, I generally think many Gulf Arabs are fair. (kinda..... bit of a wild thing to say, and seems to need much qualifying.) BUT when it comes to the Sharjah sheik, THEN people might get pretty upset - since Sharjah is in debt to Saudi Arabia. (Sharjah is the most conservative Emirate of all of them.)

Sheiks used to be elected and unelected.... there wasn't a hereditary system - until oil and the British came. It was a democratic-clan thing (for men only, of course).
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MindTraveller



Joined: 13 Mar 2003
Posts: 89
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2004 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

War is often a way to deal with high unemployment of young males.

Maybe that's why so many Saudis went to Afghanistan and landed in Cuba?
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12220
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2004 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

According to the press in Saudi Arabia 25 percent of the inmates in Guantanamo are from Saudi Arabia.
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