Who is to blame?

I was having a conversation tonight during the sahrah at a friend's house about the validity of the position that the Government of Jordan has taken regarding the War on Lebanon.

A comment was made during that conversation that sparked a thought.

Who is to blame?

My friend said that the Jordanian people don't follow rules and get politically carried away easily and as a result should not be allowed to demonstrate and should be controlled *these words are me putting politely*.

When I look around, the people of Jordan do behave rather impolitely towards each other and do not obey the rules.

And the question here is who is to blame?

We are certainly not stupid by evidence of the academic achievements and intuitive solutions made by Jordanian companies and Jordanian students ...etc. So IQ is not really it.

I blame both the people and the government.

I blame the government because the law doesn't seem to apply to everyone, and not all of the law is applied.

To explain this, here is an example. You are driving down to dowwar il waha, and find your self waiting there for a while because its congested as usual. The policeman is standing right there, and people are jumping right into the traffic inside the roundabout without paying any attention to traffic priority let alone give way. And the police man is right there.

What happens there, besides the fact that the roundabout gets needlessly congested, is that the policeman is giving the wrong message to the public, and that message is "You should only follow the rules that you could get a ticket for".

This results in exactly that, people disregarding any rules of safety and mutual respect between drivers and only follow the rules for speed limit and wearing the seatbelt (only when they can see the police man).

I blame the people also for not following the rules. I mean you don't have to break the rules just because no one is watching or you know you will not be caught. What's more, is that even without those rules existing, where the *fireworks* did decency and respect go?? Why do you have to drive like a behind?

Of course, you can take this example and apply to various sector's in our daily lives.

And there seems to be a general consensus on the stupid stupid cliche of a saying "Rules are made to be broken" .... I mean WHAT THE!!??? NO rules are made to followed, not broken. I can't think of anything that actually gets made to be broken, except for may be plates in a greek wedding. Why is no one picking up on this??

The result of this chaos is not order as some other cliche claims. Its more chaos. If the respecful, respecting and law abiding citizen keep seeing everyone getting there way by not obeying the law or following the rules, it will accumulate to a point where this citizen would need to break the law just to get things done.

I call on all Jordanian people. Please, if you really need to break a law, be it at your work, or in the mall or while driving your car, please oh please just break a law that doesn't affect others. Speed in a road where only you are driving, get a wasta for something that doesn't need one, or taken barteel from and to yourself.

And the government. If you don't want to enforce the rules don't make them. A law without enforcement is totally useless. By not enforcing the law, you are responsible for thousands of people who are breaking the law because they just want to get by. Or as Dr. Phill would put it, you are enabling thier failure.


  1. I think this problem is not only in Jordan, its in the Arabic world in general but for deferent reasons. Jordan is a non-blended mixture of people with deferent backgrounds.

    Jordanians are Bedouin (I am not judging anyone here I am just setting a fact). I lived there for a while, some of them still think of the gun as an ultimate solution and just to imagine the situation we are talking here about the university community. They still think of themselves as troops, and when you belong to a well-know one, then your problems are all solved. They have learned to obey the laws of their troops, their people. No offense meant, there is nothing wrong in belonging to a troop, but this shouldn’t be used as a “power enforcement” tool.

    We also have the “teaching system” to blame. They are interested in stuffing student’s mind much more than building a way of thinking. Arabic world suffers because of this. I believe this is a part of a bigger plan.

    I am not a blogger and I don’t have the time to be one. But sometimes I like to know whats going on. You can sense what I am talking about when you read the articles and the comments (Jordanplanet for example).

    LotusGem, I think what you have mentioned is a “result” not a “reason”.

  2. diinnaa.iblog.com

    find the truth & once u do plz try to tell people what really Isreal is doing to lebanese kids:


  3. diinnaa.iblog.com

    find the truth & once u do plz try to tell people what really Isreal is doing to lebanese kids:


  4. I pray for those Lebanese women who lost their children, nothing in this world will describe the way we all feel right now, nothing.

  5. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qana

  6. Anonymous,

    I am a Jordanian of Jordanian descent.

    I disagree with your definition of Jordanians as bedouins. Though some are bedouin and of bedouin origins, some are farmers and merchants. I am from a mainly farmer family hailing from the great Salt and am proud of my origins as I am sure everyone is proud of who they are as Jordanians from different origins.

    I believe the issue here can be very clearly seen across the whole wide spectrum of Jordanian tribes and origins.

    Tribal law is diminshing by the minute and is usually blamed for many problems in Jordan, which I really disagree with. Tribal law kept some values intact and solves a number of complex social issues and problems that would otherwise lead to mayhem.

    Thats probably a good category to start blogging about, that people immediately assume that tribal law means you get to kill a related woman and get away with it if you suspect she was an adulturer. It's definitely not that.

    Back to the original issue, I come from a large and riputable tribe, and am closely related to an influencial member of the community and government, however, neither this member nor my self have ever accepted to do wasta, for instance, at the time that everyone expects some at the level to almost have a right to do it.

    And that is the core, issue. Wasta's happen frequently, the government fails to act on it to stop it, and the people seek it and choose to accept it and use it.

  7. I just want you to know that I have many Jordanians friends who I like so much.

    There is no contradiction between what I’ve said and what you’ve replied, I do respect Bedouins. Actually I respect every human being who has principles.
    And I know that every community has its own rules, and somehow that’s good. Even in my community we have our own rules and we r proud of the most of them.

    I am just setting a fact that some people do use this in a bad way (I didn’t mean you). Every where there is this wasta thing but in Jordan, and because of their origins, things are deferent (I am not saying worse, they r deferent).

  8. I want to ask a question…

    I was thinking a lot about this blogging thing. I read so many blogs and saw how people are communicating. It surprises me to see that some of them are literally living online. They tell everyone about their details, everything happening with them, everything they feel.

    I am not in a place to judge anyone, I don’t want to do so, and this is not about judging people. I just can’t understand how they can do this? And why?

    Don’t you like to talk to someone and see his/her facial expressions? Don’t you like to have friends who can see, sit and having café with?
    Online there is no intimacy in the relations between people; do you think this is not important anymore?
    Maybe it’s the kind of life we live. Nobody have time for anything, everyone is so busy.

  9. Anonymous,

    Its a common misconception that people who live online are geeks and have no lives, and while that may be true for some, it is in no way applicable to all bloggers. If anything, bloggers I know are more talkative and more interesting socially than most people.

    For me, I blog about things that pop in my head and I think may be interesting to others, or things I have to say or I will explode.

    Blogging is just one more channel as a means of communication. There is no way you can talk face to face to 400 people at a time. So each channel has its advantages and disadvantages.

  10. I was talking about "SOME of the bloggers who live online"

  11. *lol* anonymous

    you remind me of someone, Do you live in Saudi?

  12. no I don't live in Saudi. Btw, this site is blocked in Saudi. I have friend who lives their.

    Anyway, I hope that I remind of someone u like ;)

  13. do you hate that "someone" that much :)

    seriously, do my comments annoy you?

  14. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  15. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  16. http://www.armedforcesjournal.com/xml/2006/06/

    I really want u to see it..that much :)

  17. No Anonymous, your comments do not annoy me.

    I saw the map, but I don't think this is even remotely possible. Why is it relevant btw?

  18. relavent to your article you mean?

    Well, its not. I read your articles and thought you might be intrested.

  19. lotusgem:

    I dont like leaving comments, but the Bedouin issue in Jordan is something that I like to say something about.

    Tribal law is certainly diminishing in influence, but not tribal mentality. This mentality does not exist only within Jordanian tribes, it exists in all soceities where the family is the constituent, rather than a country, an idea...etc.

    In those societies we find allegiance to the immediate family first, then to the extended family, then to blood ties, then to the neighbourhood, then the city, then...maybe, the country.

    Now about Jordan in particular: a lot of people there do not like the way those of Jordanian origin clique together, as if they are one tribe, against the Jordanians or Palestinian origin, as if those were another tribe.

    Maybe you deny that the Jordanian-Palestinian problem exists, but I personaly see how the attitudes change when you cross this "tribal" line, from a frown to a smile, from a NO to a YES, because I have a leg on each side.

    And dont think the tribal mentality is only between east-west bank. Even within the "Jordanian" tribe there are mini-tribes: Salt, Irbid, Karak...etc., and people feel affinity to Salt, for example, more than to Karak. This mini-allegiance is sometimes confused as allegiance to the country at large. Take this example: I found a blogger who 'garga3na' with Jordan First, only to find that all what he blogs about is Irbid, exclusively. I asked why does he bother mention Jordan, and he had no answer.

    Now, this tribal mentality prevails more amongst the 'east-tribe' because they are out-numbered by the 'west-tribe'. As well, because the east-tribe holds a place of privilege in the government, armed forces...etc. The constant 'threat' from the bigger tribe, and the collective interest of the east-tribe brings people together - reinforcing the tribal behaviour.

    In short, what I am saying is that: tribal mentality exists in our societies at large and at all levels. However, in certain sections of society this mentality is stronger because of the prevailing political/social/economic conditions which help it grow.

    Now in the absence of those conditions that help grow it, the tribal mentality disappears almost completely. For example, I have relatives in Karak that I visit, but going to the village, I do not sense anything different about their behaviour - no tribal thinking anywhere to be seen. But once they are in Amman and the conditions for tribal thinking become available, their behaviour changes dramatically and they start seeing people in the lens of east-west bank, salt, irbid...etc.

    It is normal xenophobia to think tribally, and it is normal reaction to outsiders. It is, however, better to acknowledge the tribal mentality and and deal with it rather than deny it, because then it will explode in our faces.

    And just so you dont think I am defending any side, the Jordanians of Palestinian origin do exhibit the tribal mentality too, but the conditions have not allowed this mentality to prevail - instead, those people behave like an oppressed majority (so not a lot of group/tribal thinking, but more of individual thinking).

    In all cases, when the flood comes, not one will survive it, whatever great city and great tribe you hail from. We need to update our thinking.

    P.S. About the 'Blood Lines' article regarding the new Middle East, dont think they dont stand a chance. If they cannot pass it through, they can at least cause a big mess while trying to do that. And anyway, didn't Sykes-Picot sound like a fantasy 86 years ago? Look how long that map lasted.


  20. Do they tell you the names of the visiters too? ;)

  21. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  22. LoudSilence, I believe they update the clustermap once a day, try tomorrow, it may show where you came from.

  23. It didn't show, I have added this to my blog. And I am sure its not working accurately. Anyways, this is impressive :)

  24. Reading the post, I would have never imagined the development/decline of the comments in this section.

    Putting the confusion in the middle of the comments aside, I respect all opinions put forth and I agree with some of them.

    My main concern is Sari's focal point in his post, who's to blame? I sincerely believe the family is to blame. The way you bring up your children, and the role model you set yourself to be for them, is what initially and most profoundly shapes their character.

    Before someone jumps in to declare "but the government puts you under so much pressure, or the government does this and that so breaking the law is your own special way of expressing your rebellion", I will provide an example.

    Whether, or not, there is a public trash bin in a street somewhere in Amman, a "clean" person would not litter, unless under abnormal conditions. By the same token, whether or not a policeman is monitoring traffic, a person brought up and educated in such a way as to always wear a seatbelt, will indeed wear the seatbelt regardless.

    This may not apply to all fields of life and on larger scopes but I have profound faith in one's own mentality, should it be properly refined.

    If you have read this far, why thank you!

  25. Tololy,

    I appreciate your comments, and I do agree with everything you said. Though I wonder why would anyone decide to raise a responsible family if they themselves were not? Classic "What was first: the chicken or the egg?".

    Now there is a whole other side to this, and thats the people who will still decide to break the law. If the government is not going to do something about it then who will? and what use is the government then? Isn't that the whole point of having a government, to protect rights and preserve justice?? If not, then what am I paying taxes for?

    About the comments, I beleive comments should be documented as they are. I would only delete some if it contained anything grossly offensive or if it was a double entry ...etc.

    You clearly have more experience than I do, what do you think the best way to handle comments is?

  26. Thanks for the response. To take it from the top, why of course, someone lacking in something cannot possibly grant it to others. I agree with this point.

    The government is responsible for enforcing the laws (which may or may not be just or correct) and for making sure they are followed in the state by either offering honours or money to those who follow them, or punishing those who do not (An idealistic view expressed by Plato). My initial point was to demonstrate that the family is the core of society, build "good" families (whatever that means) and you will run a smaller risk of having a corrupt society. That is not to say, as you mentioned, that there will not be people who will want to break the law just for the hell of it. People tend to be, by nature, crooked.

    So I think what that leaves us at is that both proper family and government are what a good society needs. We can debate this further and come up with more elements, or discover those two are trivial.

    As for the comments, that's tricky business my friend. Personally, I've put up a commenting policy in my box for people and for myself to use it as reference. I suggest you do the same so when you delete someone's comment they'll know why. I try to avoid off-topic comments as best as I can, they confuse people. Offensive comments are obviously unwanted as well.

    Think of it this way: You're not limiting people's freedom of expression, you're protecting your own rights. After all, it *is* your blog. If they want to swear, they can do it in a hole of their own :)

    Quality content is what it's about. I hope this helped.


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