Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Egyptian 80-20 Principle of Politics

Joseph M. Juran created the Pareto principle, also known as the 80-20 rule, which states that 80 percent of consequences stem from 20 percent of causes. For example when it comes to business, 80% of your profits come from 20% of your customers. The principle is named after Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto.

It's hard to tell the exact number of participants in the protests that took place during the 18 days of the Egyptian revolution. Some say 10 millions, some others say 20 millions. Some say 10% of the population and some say 20%.

Today one year ago, the Egyptians went to vote on constitutional amendments. About 80% (77.2%) of them voted with Yes, and the remaining 20% didn't accept those constitution amendments. Today, one year later, many of the 20% are blaming the 80% for the current situation in Egypt nowadays, but let's not go into this debate now.

In January this year, Freedom and Justice Party (Ikhwan) and Al-Nour Party (Salafists) got 71.5% of the seats in the parliament. Add to them some minor Jihady parties and remnants of the regime and you will probably end up with our famous 80% once more.

Now, we're having the presidential elections around the corner and the question is, who of the candidates is going to have the 80%? For sure it's not going to be the one I am going to vote for, since I've been among the 20% since the very beginning.

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