Discussion 4, Systems Analysis

Discussion 4, Systems Analysis

As originally posted in CIS-244, the Systems Analysis/Project Management class at Portland Community College in Oregon. Remember, the blue text is his as he wrote it. So there is is, typos and all.

And yes, I do already have two bachelors degrees. International Relations and Media Arts.


Q1.  Some experts believe that the growth in e-commerce will cause states and local government to lose tax revenue, unless Internet transactions are subject to sales tax. What is one argument that supports this view, and one that opposes it? Respond in at least 250 words.

Oddly enough, despite my earlier Laissez-faire attitude, I’d have to say most people are woefully unprepared to discuss tax policy; I, however, have been studying public policy since I was 13. This question focuses on a completely different problem and pretends the first one doesn’t exist. Simply put, sales tax is a regressive and oppressive tax structure that hobbles the economy by punishing the poor, who by nature would spend more to simply survive and to increase their quality of living. Next, they miss the fact that many of these same states find money to waste on bribes to lure foreign industry in. Hillboro should not have spent 750k to create 2 “datacenter jobs” and nor should Nike sit on unincorporated land. For a multi-billion dollar organization, $500,000 wouldn’t be noticed. In short, a sales tax is bad. Progressive income taxes are better. Wealth taxes are better than that.

So no, income tax is better. Thirdly, since many small businesses are net-based, a measure of revenue capture that this question implicitly asks would damage free enterprise because it would require an army of lawyers to understand. So my solution: Give the bribes and tax breaks to smaller businesses and hike them on MNC’s. Increase wages to a true minimum wage, as Alan Smith said, and watch quality of life grow.

Or just give them to me and I’ll definitely be able to start my own business. I’ll hire local, help convicted felons and buy my equipment as locally as possible. I’ll even formally incorporate here instead of Delaware.


Q2.  Suppose that the vice president of marketing asks you to write a program to create lables for a one-time advertising promotions. As IT manager, you know that the labels can be prepared more efficiently by exporting the data to a word processing program and using a mail merge feature. How would you handle this situation? Respond in at least 250 words.

Do it the more efficient way and then inform them after the fact. “Better to seek forgiveness than ask permission” and all that. Anyway, coming back later and telling the VP that their later suggestion to use the more efficient option is a good way to

Some would call that gaslighting. I call it handling. The VP is typically a very busy person and is often busy (duh), stressed and focused more on delegating tasks to achieve certain outcomes. “Ends justify the means”.

If that doesn’t sit well for some people, I’d say to inform him of the more efficient option, the money that could conceivably be saved. Start with “How to Win Friends and Influence People”. Ask if the program will be used later or this one time. And always speak in terms of their best interest if you wish to change their minds. One of my favorite techniques is to ask for smaller questions and/or favors and then ask bigger ones. It makes the subject more likely to agree with you.



Get your books at your local library instead. You’d be surprised at what you can find there. I mean, I can PS3 games at my library now!