Tag Archives: America

Out of the two issues

There are two things bugging me. One is technology based and I will get to that one next (read: article). You see, it is not the most important one and it fades against the game that is now on rotation. The first one starts on a good note, which tends to be a little awkward as it involved George Brandis, the Attorney General. The headline ‘George Brandis warns against assuming all attacks are terrorism after Munich shooting‘. I actually agree here. There was an extremely graphical video that I discussed (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2016/05/01/homerun-by-ukip/), on May 1st 2016, yet the video is all about implying targets. Here we have the crux, what makes the implied target a real target? Well that is for the boffins in the intelligence world to resolve. Yet when he states “He was obsessed with mass killings, owned a book on US school shootings and played computer shooting games. Most of his victims were fellow teenagers, five of them under 16“, I am placing a few question marks at his quotes. Just as Pauline Hanson is eager to blame religion, Brandis mentions that the German gunman played computer shooting games, which in light of the statements made by Andrew Scipione recently is slightly too enthusiastically and way too easily spoken.

Last there is “One of the phenomena that we have seen develop more recently is the development of lone actors who self-radicalise, often very quickly, most commonly online,” he said. “Very frequently these are young men with psychological disturbances, they don’t fit into the conventional or traditional understanding of a terrorism network”, which is true and fair enough. There are plenty of other sources that make similar claims, which does not make them false or wrong. It beckons the thought on how a kid of 18 got the gun. You see, Germany has a much stricter handle on guns, as can be seen in the article ‘Germany and gun laws: a chequered history‘ (at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jul/23/germany-guns-chequered-history-munich-shootings), the quote “three school massacres were instrumental in forcing through political reforms which are widely seen as making the country’s gun controls amongst the most stringent in the world“, even as many German’s have legally owned firearms. Germany is 4th on the world list of guns legally owned per capita. So, on one hand stealing one would be relatively easier (statistically speaking) in Germany, although that premise is an empty one without clear evidence on how the gun was obtained. So where did he get his gun from?

Now, this is not me stating that ISIS was involved, I am merely asking whether ISIS would eagerly use a tool like Ali Sonboly for instigating terror. Now consider the ‘news’ where we see the statement “Gunman Ali Sonboly used Facebook account to lure victim with offer of free food“, he apparently (according to the telegraph) used a fake Facebook account with the name ‘Selina Akim’ (other sources stated a hacked account), if that is true, than we have another iteration of issues. Not the fact whether or not he was a real mental health case, because this does not necessarily diminish that part. So when we consider the quote by George Brandis “when a search of the man’s home did not find any Islamist-related material, or any other political, religious or ideological material“, which we can consider in partial error. The ‘planning’ and creating a fake identity on Facebook (or hacking an account), trying to lure people of the same age group to McDonalds gives way to planning and to the act of contemplating. Contemplating because he viewed an approach with continued attention (aka tactical planning) and he observed or study thoughtfully (the use of a fake pretty girl profile). Now this does not make him any less of a mental case. Yet there is question on whether he himself came up with this or whether he was cautiously ‘coached’ by an outside source.

There is at present no way to tell, because even if no external evidence exist, until the origin of the firearm can be found, we all (me inclusive) will have a decent amount of speculations. So, I am not stating that George Brandis is wrong or incorrect. I am merely asking the questions that most have left untouched. The quote in the Telegraph (I know, not the best source to use) is “Police said the killings were not terrorist-related. They added that Sonboly was armed with an unlicensed Glock 9mm pistol and had 300 rounds of ammunition in his backpack“, the issue is regarding both the unlicensed Glock, where we do not wonder whether a Glock requires a license to exist, but the fact that the serial number could be traced back so quickly to an ‘unlicensed’ owner. In addition, the part of ‘300 rounds of ammunition’, so were these three boxes of 100? Six boxes of fifty? All issues, including the fact that ammunition outside of Canada and America tends to be a whole lot higher in price (I speak from experience here). In addition, German laws are stringent in this matter, so he would have needed to acquire/steal it somehow. There are more question marks rising now. These question marks are all linked to those proclaiming to have the facts, which makes it dangerous. In that regard, I am asking question, yet, am I asking the right questions? I feel that I am, because the actual answers might shine a more clear light on what allowed the events in Munich to happen. It still will not invalidate the views of George Brandis, yet questions need to be asked. When we know the following:

  • At almost 18:00 a shooting starts. Initially they think that there are three shooter (as there were three events), at the mall 300 rounds of ammo were found in a backpack.
  • At 20:30 gunman Ali Sonboly was found with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. (the Guardian stated that he was found 21:30 local time, as well as the statement that a post-mortem examination would be needed to see if he died from officers’ gunfire).

Now we get statements as him being into violent video games, on how this is planned, with references to books. The Independent gives us “One book found was a German translation of Why Kids Kill: Inside the Minds of School Shooters, written by Peter Langman, an American psychologist. Mr De Maiziere said that Sonboly had researched a 2009 school shooting in Germany, as well as Breivik’s Utoya massacre“. I find it odd on how he went for such a specific book. Now we add another fact from the Guardian. ““It’s a little disturbing,” said Peter Langman, who was unaware that the Munich shooter had a copy of his book until the Guardian called him at his home in Pennsylvania on Saturday. “I don’t know quite what to make of it. I don’t know why he had it,” he said“, I share the concern of Peter Langman here. So less than a day after the event, the press seems to have all the facts, all the ‘goods’ of gossip, whilst a clear investigation takes longer. In addition, if there was a terrorist concern (which there was in the initial hours), the Press would not have gotten hold of anything ‘juicy’ and we would have seen at least one day of speculation.

The entire Munich event is calling for a lot more questions, question that have few answers. Now consider that the boy, obsessed with the extremist Anders Behring Breivik, on the day of the anniversary and he leaves his backpack with ammo behind? Now, we can argue on it and I am even willing to admit that under pressures our minds can go a little wonky, but with the essential need of ammunition leaving it behind seems a little too weird. In addition, we see the German website ‘the local (at http://www.thelocal.de/20160723/munich-attacker-was-shy-video-game-fan) state 16 hours after the event “Munich police chief Hubertus Andrae did acknowledge that Sonboly had extensively researched the theme of rampages and may have read about the lethal killing spree by white supremacist Anders Behring Breivik, saying there was an ‘obvious link’ between Breivik’s crimes and Friday’s shooting“. So, when this ‘conclusion’ is made after a mere 16 hours in public, how many hours were taken to investigate this? Was this one computer source? Several sources? Was Ali actually doing that research on his (or someone’s) computer?

When we consider the statements and the time line, I end up with a fair bunch of questions, questions that lead to even more question marks and no clear answers. So are we now being played or is this the German need to suss this quiet real fast? Let’s not forget that it could have been the solo act of Ali Sonboly, yet German security services do have an issue with escalations that involve refugees. It was only 4 days earlier that a 17 year old refugee started to play ‘me and my knife and axe‘ on a train in Wurzburg, also in Bavaria. So the police has every need to not see violence escalate, but at present what we are told and shown, I am not sure if the local population will accept the given as gospel truth. You see, the fact that both events are stated to not having any links to Islam extremism is not an issue, the fact becomes what pushed these two kids over the edge. There might not be a given answer to the first case as a knife and axe are readily available in nearly every hardware shop. A 9mm pistol with 300 rounds of ammunition is another issue entirely. As there are no links or clear indications where the gun came from and how he got his fingers on one. We become the people raising question marks whilst those who should be with answers are unable to provide any acceptable ones. This gives more and more weight to this issue being one with consequences.

It will take days before the dust settles and we have some chance of actually seeing the facts, yet the reality should sink in to many of my readers. There are iterations of cycled news, to some degree based on questionable data. Yet in this case it is less about the people and the fiction we see from the press, in this the press seems to be handed a less than sincere handshake from certain officials. Those officials have to push for agenda’s that make their live manageable, which is only partially fair enough.

The question we end with is: ‘Yet, was it good enough?’

I am not sure who has the answers, mainly because several of the released facts are too questionable.

Leave a comment

Filed under Media, Military, Politics

Homerun by UKIP

UKIP scored a home-run and we missed it. Some were watching the game and did not realise the play. Some were watching as the opposing party and hoped that no one else noticed. I did notice, but there was time to let things unfold. I saw what he stated (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=buCUlPOsuNg) when he starts around 5:27. Those who watched might have wondered, might have looked and no one reacted. Those who needed to react did not, mainly because they did not comprehend what they just heard. So let’s look at that genie out of the bottle again. Remember, that this was stated in December 2015, we have seen many escalations since then, not in the least, the refugee issues.

  1. 3 billion a year in aid to Turkey without guarantees.
  2. Visa free access by Oct 2016.
  3. Fast track Turkey into EU (97% of that nation is in Asia).
  4. A nation that prefers bombing Kurds than fight ISIS.
  5. A nation that ignores ISIS travelling within its borders.
  6. 8% of Turks support ISIS (source: Pew Institute)
  7. Accuses Turkey of Buying ISIS oil.
  8. It is bordering Syria, Iraq and Iran.

The clear path of blackmail is seen all over the place and the fact that the EU is giving in to blackmail gives us the question, who runs the EU? Is it merely big business holding onto politicians like a puppeteer to a puppet on a string? Is it America holding the collapse of the Dollar and the Euro over the heads of all, making the Bankers push the politicians the way that is most beneficial to greed? Whatever and whomever is holding the strings, we can see that the solution is actually decently easy, when you take America out of the equation.

  1. It is at present 3 billion a year. Yet the one part everyone forgot is that the financial aid to Turkey would increase to 60 billion the moment they become part of the EU. That truth is actually easy to see when we look at point 8. When the EU becomes the border of Syria, Iraq and Iran, as stated. The moment any ISIS, via Turkey, makes one successful hit on Russia, you better believe that after the initial stupidity of Turkey (shooting down a Russian Jet for allegedly being over their airspace for 10 seconds), Russia will not play nice, Turkey would become a direct target, with the Russian fleet in the Black Sea, it is not just Adm. Aleksandr Vitko who is spoiling for a fight with the Turks. When the Turks become part of the EU, the massive lack of Turkish intelligence will soon there after force Europe into a war they have no way of winning.
  2. When we see Canadian Global Research (at http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-isis-oil-trade-with-turkey-documentary-reveals-secret-oil-deals-between-turkey-the-islamic-state/5522560), we see confirmation on statement 2 by Nigel Farage. More important, that is yesterday’s news (quite literally), meaning that certain power players have had this in their hands for MONTHS! The EU has decided to ignore those little titbits, giving additional power to my speculation on how the EU is becoming a mere puppet to greed and the Dollar. The initial source (Russian Today), gives us in addition the quote ““Crossing the Syrian-Turkish border was also very easy. It was like crossing the street,” ISIS member from Saudi Arabia, Muhammed Ahmed Muhammed told RT“. Now this could be Russian propaganda, but the timing fits, when we consider the Turkish actions. So this is a place, where you want to give 78 million threats to European security free passage? Yet when we see news in Al Arabiya that Turkey destroyed 900 ISIS members, we see that the numbers cannot be verified independently, so it is their word against verifiable facts. You should feel free to make that call. In addition we see the quote “Turkey has deported more than 3,300 foreigners suspected of links to militants groups, particularly ISIS militants“, so how were they deported? With weapons and ammunition? When we see the final quote “Turkey, long accused of turning a blind eye to the extremists crossing into Syria, has now taken a larger role in the fight against ISIS, opening a key air base in southern Turkey to the US-led coalition fighting the extremists and reinforcing its border to prevent infiltrations“, which is decently close to where the Russian Jet was shot down, so are the Americans there to keep the Russian of Turkish backs? Even when we consider the implications of ISIS and their threat to Turkey, we see another side (at http://heavy.com/news/2016/04/watch-new-isis-mass-execution-video-is-directed-at-turkey/) WARNING, THIS VIDEO SHOWS EXECUTIONS IN GRAPHICAL DETAIL! It is an ISIS video, even as we consider the fact that the Turkish subtitles, there is no emphases on the fact that the ‘Nazi like rap’ is in German, it mentions how ‘they’ are on route to Europe, there is a likelihood that the video is equally a message towards the sympathisers that might be in Germany, but that is pure speculation on my side. The article raises the following issue in the quote “It is also widely believed that beyond the Islamic State’s appeal to some in Turkey, the Turkish government is playing a “double game” with ISIS. Outwardly opposing the group, while possibly striking oil deals with its leaders“, Farage was raising the issue spot on. How can anyone in the EU consider any alliance with a government that is basically nothing more than a Benedict Arnold with a stronger dislike for Croissants!

Here we pause for a moment. You see, the issue has already been made, several power players must have been very aware of Turkey. There is no way that the intelligence community at large was in the dark on this. Journalists (especially Russian ones) tend not to be that good, which brings additional pressure why the people at large was kept in the dark. Not just those in the UK, but in equal measure the French German and Dutch populations at large have not been made clearly aware of these dangers and the pressures Turkey has been bringing to the table for some time now. I kept Italy out of that list because of additional religious indications.

You see, the one part that is harder to prove, but has a given on April 8th we got “He told AFP that Turkey still has to fulfil 72 conditions on its side to gain visa-free travel to Europe’s passport-free Schengen zone“, this came from Marc Pierini, visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe. So how far are these 72 conditions? You see, Turkey has so far not shown anything real when it comes with verifiable actions against ISIS, so when I see “Turkey is slated to receive benefits including visa-free travel for its citizens to Europe, promised ‘at the latest’ by June 2016“, whilst a large amount of the 72 conditions are not met, how come that the papers at large are not keeping a keen eye on those 72 conditions and a list of the ones that are met and the ones that are not met, whilst Spain with its own legislation will not make issues any easier as it is within their penal code as it is illegal to forcibly deport and transfer people from EU territory. So will we see something according to the air of ‘Yes, we did not do all the tasks but fuck it! Make us a Eurozone member anyway!‘, because that is the straw that will break the EU’s back. The people at large in many nations will not continue to be in an open border situation under those conditions. So hello Brexit and Goodbye Schengen! I wonder how things will change when the borders fall shut. America had been playing a dangerous game with Greece, but Turkey is one game that will not be tolerated by the European Community at large.

In all this, we have now seen that Nigel Farage has shown in multiple ways why Brexit is the way to go. The brilliant statement by Mark Carney in the House of Lords will not stand as a shield strong enough to counter that, meaning that my conservatives will need to take a massive detour on several fields if they want to hold the centre of parliament regarding Brexit and even then it remains a challenge whether the next administration will remain Conservative. If the quality of life for Britons goes up it would be possible, but it cannot be stated as a given, because too many issues are currently surfacing, many of them directly linked to America and the IMF. In addition to all this, there has been a rising amount of warnings about ISIS hotspots in Turkey, targeting American tourists. This news and the fact on where the events are taking place, implies that either ISIS has a run of the land in Turkey, giving ample evidence to Nigel Farage claim 5, or there is a growing issue with sympathisers and even though there is no clear evidence on the percentage, we should emphasize that even 1% would give ISIS the run of the land in Turkey, at 8% they could be running Turkey soon enough, giving additional reasons to not let Turkey anywhere an EU membership for a long time to come.

Yet in all this, I have to add my side to this. The side that looked at other remaining factors. Factors like the news one week ago where we see in an IMF report “Turkey’s economic growth continues to show resilience despite several shocks. Growth remains based on domestic demand, in turn, supported by accommodative monetary and fiscal policies“, resilience? This place has the GDP of Costa Rica that is nothing to be proud of. In addition, the report (at http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2016/pr16182.htm) shows “To this end, the government has announced an ambitious program of reforms aiming to increase potential growth and reduce external imbalances in the medium term“, with what currency? There are billions pushed into Turkey each year because they could not get their space (read: their nation and their head space) in order. When we look at the stated forecasts by the IMF, we see that Net Exports are set at -0.9% this year, yet after that, Turkey makes a miraculous forecast of suddenly increasing their net export by 0.6% (in 2017), whilst there is no data of any kind that could explain such a massive increase. Now consider a realistic growth and the net exports go towards to -0.6%, which would be awesome for Turkey, it gives other nations the impression that their goods will be bought as Turkey imports more than it exports, but with the sliding exports there will be no cash left to pay for the imports, making this document a larger danger than many realise, it shows how Turkey could become the next Greece (read: not that big a chance, but not impossible). With unemployment going from 10.8 this year to a forecasted 10.5, we see a document that is forecasted at the margins, making things a little more positive than they actually are and we will see the sudden management of bad news in about 6 months. But that is already too late, the influx of Schengen Turks would have commenced, and under those conditions the United Kingdom at large would hope that Brexit becomes a reality, there will be a massive change and suddenly we have to give in, because America could not clean up its act during the last two administrations. It had to do something really stupid thing, like sending a lame duck president to do some scaremongering. In that regard, Ted Cruz is right, even if he is not elected president, the US needs the UK. It needs it for several reasons, economy being a larger one. I like the quote in USA Today last week: ““Instead of standing with our allies President Obama routinely hurls insults at them,” Cruz wrote. He said Obama’s comment was “nothing less than a slap in the face of British self-determination”“, which is at the heart of the matter. It is entirely likely that his analysts have already deserted him whilst trying to get the best after administration job in the commercial industry. In addition to that, we see a lacking side of the press when we try to learn which of the conditions have yet to be met by Turkey. Considering that, according to Turkish officials the Visa Free commitment towards Turkey is now only a month away. Is that not weird too?

Too many Britons are realising that they are being presented a joke, a message with no reality or national future behind it. The EU has taken too much and not reigned in those who should have been dealt with from 2008 onwards. That is at the core of the matter and it will boost the numbers of Nigel Farage, which should have been prevented by my party a long time ago. I wonder why they decided to leave it in the middle, unattended for this long.




Filed under Finance, Media, Military, Politics

European Exodus Community

There is a reality that people seem to miss. There is a reality that the people at large have been ignoring for far too long. Big business had been until early this year trivialising the entire Brexit issue. Some started the catchphrase ‘Bremain’, but that went out of fashion fast. At some point, in October 2015 something expected happened. An American opened his mount (in this case Trade representative Michael Froman), which gave the Britons “If you leave EU you face barriers to trading with America“, Is that really so? In my view, if the Democratic Party does not get its A-game in place, many will not want to be in trade with a nation that cannot pay its bill anyway. You see, if Brexit becomes a reality, the Euro will take a sizeable dive, which will also hurt the US Dollar. More important, as the US has not been able to keep any kind of control on their budgeting, the US issue would take additional tumbles. Consider that the US exports $57 billion to the UK, should one direction fall away, than so does the other direction, you see pharmaceuticals can come from India, Vehicles can come from Japan and Medical Technical equipment can come from places like the Netherlands (to some extent). We are looking at an easy 12 billion going somewhere else. So that part is not a given, yes, UK export might have a few hitches, yet when other players are found for at least 20 billion in goods, new arrangements will be an option (very fast), not so much for the US of A.

Yet, I get it. The USA is afraid, very afraid because of what the Euro changes will bring and their fear is escalating. This we get from Euractiv (at https://www.euractiv.com/section/uk-europe/news/majority-of-french-back-holding-frexit-referendum/), who is now proclaiming that “53% of French surveyed would like to hold a referendum on their country’s continued EU membership“, an issue I saw coming a long time ago. i was the first one keeping my eye on this, and even as Hollande and Sarkozy are trying to make other ‘arrangements’ they now realise that non-compliance with the French voters will mean that the bulk will demand Marine Le Pen be elected, another prediction I saw coming. More important, should Brexit be averted, than Frexit still remains a real risk. It implies that American will almost be forced to send their own Al Jolson European Tour 2016-2017, yet unlike Al Jolson, this tour will not be a sell-out success, it will be seen as a painful reminder of America not cleaning ‘house’ in the 2004-2009 era. An era that brought many nations to the edge of despair. Now we see the Obama administration trying the option of Al Jolson singing ‘can I have a little more please‘, an idea many Europeans will regard as offensive. The changes will give additional worry. From one perspective, if the dollar collapses, export from America should go through the roof, but the overly mismanaged economy gives a clear clarion call that the funds to cate to this need would end up being insufficient. The latter part is my own speculation, I have no hard numbers supporting that part. From all the export, one in eight is about machinery. This seems to be a solid one, especially from the excellence in the past, yet in all this we in equal measure ignore that the US is not the only place to get this stuff, so if a part will move to an Asian provider, American wealth numbers will take a sharp dive, all that because Michael Froman seemed to have forgotten that they are not the only player in town.

Yet I digress!

There is now the realistic concern that a European Exodus could hit the community, a real danger, which also means that certain borders will come into a different play. This will impact the USA as well as Europe. Yet instead of a clear summary, the press seems to be throwing too much in the air with emotional plays from both sides of that isle which I consider to be not so productive. We see not so helpful articles by Jane McConnell on ‘why Brexit would be apocalyptic for the games industry‘ with quotes like “British gaming receives a wealth of talent and funding as a result of being in the EU“, which is a joke to say the least. When we see PC Gamer giving us info regarding Ubisoft Montreal “but it was built primarily on the strength of Quebec’s generous subsidies and tax breaks, and with a newly-elected government facing serious debt problems, those breaks are being cut back. That has CEO Yannis Mallat taking another look at the studio’s long-term future“, so that billion Euro firm in France is ‘surviving’ due to tax breaks. (at http://www.pcgamer.com/ubisoft-ceo-ponders-reductions-to-quebec-tax-breaks/). Now, remember that this article is 2 years old. So basically in the time that Ubisoft created mere mediocrity in gaming. In all that time only the recently released ‘the Division‘ seems to be up to critical scrap. So how about not catering to tax breaks? The final argument “and thanks to the EU working time directive, we are guaranteed 20 days a year of paid annual leave, offering us all us all at least one day we can happily set aside for binge playing. That’s worth remembering“, how interesting that she relies on that part, not on the part of government accountability which is actually driving people away. In addition, remember Markus Persson, simple small software firm in Sweden? It made over 2 billion in the end (from Minecraft). So, let’s not cater to mediocrity! The same issue can be stated for Hello Games. It is about the reset the bar for gaming quality, both small firms, just the two visible in a group of dozens. These tax breaks are there for the small players, but they have been overwhelmingly used by large players to not dig into the ‘quality setting’ frontiers they should have been in.

I feel personally decently certain that Brexit is becoming a reality. If the press would focus on truth and fact, not on emotion to sway the people, there would be a certainty that Brexit will be. It will drive Frexit too. The EEC will become a near death-trap for the last one in, which means that Italy will not be in a happy place between 2017 and 2018. I expect it will drive the membership numbers of Lega Nord with Matteo Salvini, I cannot tell how strong, because I know too little of the other Italian players. Yet in all this, certain other players are rearing its ugly head. You see, when we go back to November 2015 we see a paper by Natixis (at http://cib.natixis.com/flushdoc.aspx?id=88106), there we see “In the worst case scenario, the United Kingdom leaves the EU and does not join the European Free Trade Association; there would then be custom tariffs between the United Kingdom and the EU, but given the size of the trade flows, the impact on the economies would be limited. The United Kingdom has a very small industry and its exports of services, which are very specialised, would probably not be too severely affected“, this is the view I also ‘synched’ to. Basically, the bad sides of the EU towards the UK are massively larger than the good sides. The Natixis paper by Patrick Artus might not be complete, but it gives the goods that matter, from that point of view.

You see, the short-sighted users of a spreadsheet forgot the drive that Brexit could have, the view I predicted already in 2014. In addition, the growth and danger that right parties all over Europe became, fuelling one another is a side I did not see coming either. In addition to that view, we saw in November that Wolf Richter, Wolf Street in Business insider had “A Brexit would be ‘a non-event’“. I wonder where that came from. Oh no, I need not wonder because they mention Natixis and quote the relevant parts.

So what changed?

Well, the part I foresaw and everyone ignored is that Frexit is slowly becoming a reality. Now we have ourselves a lot more than a mere horserace, because this is what Natixis can’t use. It is in massive parts a French conglomerate, not a global one. In that regard Frexit will impact on Natixis as a whole. In this I mean that Natixis will see its profit margins decrease by a fair bit (we are talking a game of billions here), whilst in equal part limit certain economic movements and options. That makes it a different event. And the less we say about the impact on the US the better. Ah, here I am wrong!

You see, Lieutenant general Frederick Benjamin Hodges gives us the following last Tuesday (at http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-usa-idUSKCN0WH0QJ), we get ‘Brexit would weaken NATO versus Russia‘, which is not entirely correct, is it Freddie? It is not a lie either! The mess seems complicated but it is not. We can agree that the General is under orders here. I reckon massively from his Commander in Chief who dropped the ball several times and is sending the General out into an economic field that is not ‘his’ theatre of war. Here is the part that is unwritten (not by me), whilst everyone was looking at Lehman Brothers and other Wall Street players, they all forgot about Natixis, who has a wealth portfolio that delivers an annual return that outranks more than just a few EU nations. When that limits and dwindles many players will panic, because the survival of some is now depending on continuity. Something that behind the screens of Brexit and Frexit comes to terms. With Brexit there was enough time to make adjustments, with Frexit that time will not be there, apart from the fact that it will force Germany to take a different course (one that is expected, but cannot be predicted). In all this that is only one element. The General is right that NATO will weaken, what is not given is that it will change the expenditure that some nations are making, which will directly hit Raytheon, Northrop Grumman, Boeing and Lockheed Martin, which will now be a sizeable dent in the American economy too. Apart from a collapsing Euro, America will get hit by a double whammy, that part is not given (it is ignored by too many), not shown and not elaborated on. It is how expenditure changes. NATO existed since long before the Euro was a reality, but as those evolutions were taken, by lowering defence spending on a national level in Europe, we see that this ignored cluster will have serious consequences, very much so for the American military hardware industry.

Can I be wrong?

That is what matter, for me as much as for you the reader. We will be depending on two elements, Is Brexit a reality in the first and will it force Frexit in the second. The first is less up in the air, but not a given, in the second, when Brexit happens, Frexit will be a certainty. Even if Brexit does not happen now, the French are worried and they do not want to be the last in the row of decision makers as Italy currently is, the fact that 53% want this referendum is worrying to many players (except for Marine Le Pen). Both Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy cannot ignore the cries of the French, if they do, they will feel the discomfort that Marie Antoinette had on October 16th 1793 (well, one can fantasize, can one not?), because France is for the French (as they see it), not for the Americans. They will come down hard on their government, which is playing perfectly into the hands of Marine Le Pen. No matter what happens, with or without Brexit. Germany cannot sustain the environment without the other three players, which places the UK now in a tactical predicament. Relying on France to keep cool, this is what drives Brexit to additional momentum.

So all this will drive the European Exodus Community, to some extent people, because national business needs the motivated people to get businesses working and moving forward, but for the most it will be about small businesses in a national setting. Those who adapt fast will grow. Larger corporations will feel the disastrous drag of not changing gears, of not adapting to the new environment, mainly because those head offices (many in America and Asia) will not comprehend the old systems that drove them and the changes required to make them. Those depending on decision makers will find that delays will cost increasingly until (often enough) the decision has been made too late. Rowing against the current will be a new slogan that larger players will have to deal with, driving their talents to smaller places where speed is available. This exodus environment will hit in many places, in many layers on several fronts. A front where only the adjusted will make headway. I wonder whether 2018 will be the year of culling the corporate herd. It is too soon to tell, but it will for the most depend on the brethren Brexit and Frexit both leaving this rocky boat called EEC!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

If at first you don’t succeed!

That was the first thought I had when I saw the article ‘Academics attack George Osborne budget surplus proposal‘ (at http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/jun/12/academics-attack-george-osborne-budget-surplus-proposal) and the title reflects on them as well as on me. You see, as stated more than once before, I have no economics degree, but I have insight in data, I am not a bookkeeper, but I know how to keep my own register (I’ll let you boil down that conundrum by yourself).

So as I have a go at 77 of the best known academic economists, I present the first quote, which is: “George Osborne’s plan to enshrine permanent budget surpluses in law is a political gimmick that ignores “basic economics”, a group of academic economists has warned“, here we see the first failing of these economists. You see, the first rule of a basic economy is plain and simple:

Do not spend more than you earn!

That has been a massive need for over 20 years! Some ‘academics’ convincing that the budget could be X (whatever the amount is, now they tell us that X = Y (part of our costs) + Z (the interest and minimal payback on a massive loan that allows us to do more). At some point, one politician was stupid enough (or forced) to do this, but then the next one did it too and so on. Now we have a game, because of a group of flagellationists, we are all whipped into a place we never wanted to be, which is deep in debt!

Were those economists wrong?

They were not IF (a very loud if) the politicians would have diminished the debt, which is now 1.5 trillion pounds. You remember the first formula (X=Y+Z), now let’s take a look. You see, the numbers have been shifted again and again. Some now state that the interest is £42.9 billion per annum (2013 numbers), So now we get X = Y + (42.9 + 30), which is the annual interest and the paying down the debt at 2%, let’s not forget that at this pace it will still take 50 years, that is, if we get a budget that is actually set!

There are other complications that will make ‘Z’ higher, or ‘X’ a lot lower, when we consider maturing bonds and all other methods of ‘borrowing’ funds. You will see that the only winner is the bank. Whomever gets paid 42.9 billion is getting that as a guarantee without ever working for it. You the readers in the UK are doing all the work for that bank. The economists are not trying to tell you that. They come with ‘it is a very complex situation’ or my favourite ‘it would take too long to explain it all’. Yet, in their own words, ‘basic economics’ is actually really simple.

Do not spend money you do not have!

Now we get the quote “the chancellor was turning a blind eye to the complexities of a 21st-century economy that demanded governments remain flexible and responsive to changing global events“, which I see as a half-truth! You see, economics are quite complex, but they are only complex because economists and their friends in the financial sector MADE it complex! They get all this money for free from governments all over the world. They do not want to change that ever!

For the sake of the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth and our sanity, George Osborne is making that change. If previous Labour (especially Gordon Brown MP) had not spend the massive amounts they had, the UK would be in a much better position, but that is not the case. The economic view of ‘flexible and responsive’ is a valid point, but previous events turned ‘flexible and responsive’ into non-accountable overspending of funds that were not available. It will take a generation to clean up. The issues in Greece got so hairy that the President of the United States put his foot down, 2 days later the IMF walks away. An economy so deep in debt, an economy only representing 2% of the economy of the EEC could be able to topple it all. That is what many do not want to address!

This gets us to a linked quote in the article ‘Greece running out of time to avoid default, leaders concede‘ (at http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/jun/12/greece-running-out-of-time-to-avoid-default-leaders-concede), where we see: “Greece has less than a week to strike a deal with its Eurozone creditors to avoid defaulting on its massive debts and perhaps being kicked out of the single currency area, with German leaders and top European Union officials now conceding that default is the likeliest outcome“, so as you might recall that Greece claimed that a solution was ‘almost’ there, I will show you the ‘flexible and responsive’ side to the word ‘almost’.

You see, “I have had sex with Laura Vandervoort almost every night!” Monday almost, Tuesday almost, Wednesday almost. You get the idea, ‘almost’ here is like ‘as soon as possible’, at times it means ‘Never!’ (it would be so much fun to get a mail from Laura stating that she will be here ‘as soon as possible’, I am not beyond irony and it will make me chuckle for weeks!

Why this example? Well, I have been telling the readers for months that Greece has been screwing us around, you see how the words just fall into place? The economy does not! This is the clear evidence that the law must change. While all the players getting nice incomes were saying ‘tomorrow’ ad infinitum, George Osborne is saying ‘Now!’

The fact that this is essential is also seen through the acts of President Obama. Tax evasion was high on the G-meetings (G-7, G-20, take your pick), yet, when Australia introduced the Google Tax, we see the us Treasury making waves to stop it ‘US Treasury pressures Tony Abbott to drop ‘Google tax’ ‘ (at http://www.afr.com/news/policy/tax/us-treasury-pressures-tony-abbott-to-drop-google-tax-20150428-1mu2sg). They stated it as: “Mr Stack said it was critical that Group of 20 countries like Australia that were participating in global tax negotiations did not pass laws on their own that would contradict international agreements“. In my words, my response would be: “Mr Stack, you and your administration are a joke! You have not acted for over three administrations in reigning in corporate greed, your American corporations were cause of a financial meltdown 11 years ago, a meltdown we are all still feeling. In addition, you have not set ANY solid ground in countering tax evasion, other than the windy speeches we have expected to see, all speech, no action! It is time for the American administration to put their actions where their mouths have been for too long!” Not too diplomatic, but the message is coming across I reckon. The commonwealth can no longer adhere to the irresponsible acts of a nation that is 18 trillion in debt!

So as I see it the quote “they argued Osborne was guilty of adopting a gimmick designed to outmanoeuvre his opponents“. You see, this is not a gimmick, this is a direct need where the banks are no longer in control, the Commonwealth is a monarchy, that is there to give a future to the people and to keep them in a place where they have a future. For now Greece basically no longer has a future. It has spent it all, unless the US treasury comes up with 50 billion (quoting Jean-Claude Juncker), it only has time to find a solution that will not end the existence of Greece.

This is the massive difference that the people keep on forgetting. The UK is a monarchy, with a sovereign ruler who has accepted (or: was given) the responsibility to keep the nation thriving and its people moving towards a happy place that has a future, America is a republic, where the elected official is depending on large contributions, especially from the wealthy. It has given in to big business again and again for the last 20 years. As we see the USA, a nation more and more drowning in civil unrest, we should consider how they got there. The got there by lacking in laws that held big business and government to account of spending. Here we now see “George Osborne’s plan to enshrine permanent budget surpluses in law“, this is an essential first step to get us all back on a decent track where we are not in debt!

Getting back to the formula. The last step we were at was: X = Y + (42.9 + 30), you see, the people all over the place have been ‘deceived’ to some extent. Deceived is hard to use, because the word ‘misrepresented’ is a much better word. X is what the UK receives. With large corporations ducking their fiscal responsibility, the value of X goes down, with unemployment issues and zero hour issues, the people get less money and as such they pay less taxation, so X goes down even further. Now we get the set costs. (Y), more and more elderly, means more costs and they do not pay taxation. So the elderly drive down X a small bit and drive up Y a large portion. I do not hold that against them! They worked, they made Britain (and Australia) great! They did their share, so they get to sit down to enjoy the tea and biscuits (an additional fine venison steak would be good too). These are all elements that the economy is confronted with and as these economists have been to enabling to big business, we see that we must put a stop to what is happening. We have no other choice, or better stated we have less and less options. These economists are all polarised into one direction, one direction that has not worked for over a decade. We get misrepresented by ‘managed bad news’ and other forms of information we can no longer rely on.

Consider that I have been on top of the Greek case for some time now, so when we see (at http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/eu/countries/greece_en.htm) the fact that the forecast of Greece is 0.5% in 2015 and 2.9% in 2016, I wonder how they got to it all and if such misrepresentation should not be a cause for liability? Is it based upon raw data that we can trust? You see as these economists all rely on the ‘formula’ and all concede that it is a good model and a real predictor, my gut has been a lot more accurate and these economists had to adjust their numbers downwards time and time again. The last part for Greece is seen in the Financial Times, it reflects on what I stated earlier (at http://www.ft.com/fastft/343532/eurozone-financial-fragmentation-hits-5-year-low)!

Initiatives such as the European Stability Mechanism, a permanent rescue fund designed to limit financial chaos that might arise from an event such as a Grexit, as well as the €1.1tn quantitative easing programme, have helped insulate the rest of the Eurozone from Greece“, to ‘limit financial chaos’, is that not weird? Many players downplayed the impact of Grexit (especially France). So this ‘rescue fund’, how much is in it? You see, that will become a debt too and where does it go? France, Italy? They are in deep financial waters. So how much more will be needed to stop France and Italy to go over the edge?

Simple economics is to lower debt, now to throw money from other sources at the interest of debt, which solves nothing! George Osborne was right before, he is right now. The fact that the Economy players, the IMF and America do not like it when others are out of debt, that does not mean that we should adhere. I showed how USA adheres to big business (including banks), it is time to be self-reliant! So as rating agencies set the outlook bar to negative, we should start to wonder, who do they serve? You see, if the ratings are about the ‘now’, so the outlook is moved from Negative from Stable for an event that is not happening until 2017. Guess what, the UK was always stable, and when these ratings are shown to be ‘flawed’, then what?

To be honest, S&P has an interesting paper on this (at http://www.standardandpoors.com/aboutcreditratings/RatingsManual_PrintGuide.html). Here we see the quote “Credit ratings are opinions about credit risk published by a rating agency” and “Standard & Poor’s ratings opinions are based on analysis by experienced professionals who evaluate and interpret information received from issuers and other available sources“. Now we get the final part. The first quote is clear. It makes it known that this is a matter of opinion. The second quote is how they get it. Now tell me, how many of these ‘77 economists’, who were thumping George Osborne on all this, are involved in setting economic predictions? Are they linked to people who do set the ratings? I am not certain of the first premise, but I am decently certain of the second premise!

So are these economists, who claim that it is about ‘governments remain flexible and responsive’, is that it, or is the game getting rigged because the few are willing to sell the larger proportion of a population down the drain for the interest of self?

Consider the information given and work for a place of common sense. You will soon realise that the path of George Osborne is the right one, moreover, when in your life, has debt ever been a good thing and how is the debt working for Greece?


1 Comment

Filed under Finance, Law, Media, Politics

True torture

This issue started a while before this. The title “Tony Abbott: Australians ‘sick of being lectured to’ by United Nations, after report finds anti-torture breach” is just an incentive for emotion. (at http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbott-australians-sick-of-being-lectured-to-by-united-nations-after-report-finds-antitorture-breach-20150309-13z3j0.html).

There are two quotes that need to be looked at: “Mr Abbott’s criticism of the UN follows his attack last month of Australian Human Rights Commission President Gillian Triggs, in which he called the report she commissioned on children in detention a ‘political stitch-up’” and “The United Nations report, by the UN’s special rapporteur on torture, finds Australia is violating the rights of asylum seekers on multiple fronts under the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment“.

I am all for human rights! I think Human rights are important, but what about the people ‘orchestrating’ the message?

Let’s that a look at the message ‘U.N. Urges U.S. To Treat Migrants as Refugees’ (at http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/07/08/329774643/u-n-urges-u-s-to-treat-migrants-as-refugees). The message seems to be clear, but what is that message? When we consider the quote “The refugee agency is particularly concerned about the large number of unaccompanied children arriving in the U.S. Washington estimates more than 90,000 unaccompanied children will arrive by the end of September“.

This was the news of last year. You see, what we all ignore (especially Labor and Greens) is that this all has a cost, it does not matter whether it is in Australia, Canada or America. When we accept refugees we accept financial responsibility to some extent. This is the not so nice part if us trying to be good and humane, there is a cost and we do not shy away from it, but we have limits, we all do! With every irresponsible act of spending what none have we limit our options and limit those who we allow in as well.

There is however another side, the side from the UN as we see the title ‘Asylum seeker torture report: United Nations special rapporteur Juan Mendez responds to Tony Abbott criticism‘ (at http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/asylum-seeker-torture-report-united-nations-special-rapporteur-juan-mendez-responds-to-tony-abbott-criticism-20150310-13zrwz.html). The quote “I think we in the United Nations also deserve respect and I wish the Prime Minister had taken my views on this more seriously and engaged with my rapporteurship more constructively” is a defence and a subtitle, also a statement that is not incorrect, but perhaps incomplete. When we see the quote “Among the concerns raised by the report was that escalating violence on Manus Island, and the ‘intimidation and ill-treatment of two asylum seekers’ who gave statements about last year’s violent clashes at the centre was in breach of the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment” issues come to light. Now, it is important that I am not making any claims of dishonesty or that the claims are lies. There would be no way for me to prove it. In addition, it is nice that we get these ‘verdicts’ from the UN, an administrative group where those ‘voices’ are incomes vastly above minimum wage, an income fuelled by other governments, but guess what, EVERY single one of these nations are in debt, not one excluded! Yet, this is not about money, or the income of some of these comfortable living executives. Let’s take a look at some of the elements.

Let’s restate the phrase: “intimidation and ill-treatment of two asylum seekers“, now, I am willing to blindly accept the following:

  1. There are likely more than 2 victims
  2. Let’s accept that in every case it is always both intimidation and ill-treatment

Now let’s take a look at the information form Amnesty international (at http://www.amnesty.org.au/refugees/comments/33587/), where they state the following: “There are currently 1,100 asylum seekers detained on Manus Island, all of whom are men who arrived without their families. These men have fled war, chilling acts of torture, threats of death, or profound discrimination. Many of them have made the desperate decision to make a perilous journey from Indonesia and other countries, including Sri Lanka, to Australia“.

Now, let’s be realistic and accept that more than two people have faced certain ordeals, there is no way for me to clearly find (at present) how many faced events. But if we take 20 people, than the issue revolves around 1.8% opposed to 0.18%. 1.8% might be too large, and I would agree with it, but we all seem to forget that a detention centre like that, is a place with constant pressures and clashing cultures, there are uncertain times ahead for many of these people, so pressures will come to a boil pretty fast in a place like that.

I am trying not to trivialise, but the need for better statistics is evidently required before we start a dictionary war between Australian parliament and the UN, whilst we know that the media is ‘presiding’ both sides whilst they enjoy the benefit of the occurring discord.

Yet, in the end, the actual culprit has not once been named. Oh, evil villain, oh master of the dischordian principle that weighs the loom of infinity unto the hands of fate. I have seen thee oh villain and I name thee………. (wait for it)………. Tax-Man!

Yes, in all the issues of emotion, so many forget that humanitarian aid must be paid for. Humanitarian causes require funds to exist, as do immigration centres, because they are a pure cost for any government. Which is one reason why Greece is getting rid of them tout-suit! In addition, they are so broke they are now returning to the need for WW2 reparations from Germany, which I will not condemn, but in reality, their own Tax-Man did not do anything, which covers close to 1/3rd of all their debt. So as they ignored current debts (and irresponsible spending), they go back to WW2. It makes perfect sense, the Greek PM and that finance ‘Rock Star’ have no other options (if they want to remain in power), but this is not about the Greek debt!

This is about refugees and the truth is that many nations (most of them), they are all failing refugees, mainly because of Tax-Man. You see, this super villain relies on the help of its sidekick Mrs. Poli Titian and this sidekick has been overspending, giving tax breaks to large corporations in a whimsy notion that under those condition more money would come in. It was a flawed approach, because they all rely on people SPENDING money. Guess what? They overspend on luxuries and are now paying it off, many have no jobs and many more have been in an income world that resembles the world of Frozen, whilst the cost of living is still rising. All this adds up to empty coffers.

So Mr Juan Mendez, where will these costs come from? This is not my lashing out, this is me actually asking. I remain in favour to help refugees as much as possible, but how? We need to make massive changes to the way of life we now have. Mrs Poli Titian needs to actually instigate massive changes. Not just in Australia, US, Canada et al. ALL nations need to accept certain changes. We need to readdress the way we think and I will admit right here, right now that I am at a loss how to go best about it.

In my view, there is an option, but it is not one you like, not one you will even find acceptable or humane.

  1. Retirement homes are as per now only for those without family. If they have family, they must go there. This needs to be a global change

Yes, you are all upset now. Yet consider, if we unite families we shrink the costs of arranging all this, yet in answer, those funds will ALL go to legal aid, health care aid and refugee aid.

  1. Refugees can come in, but only assigned to volunteer positions for places like Salvation Army, St. Vincent, Red Cross and other volunteer places. For this they receive room and board. It will give aid to other places, work force and support. For that they will receive a place in our community and after 5 years they will get automatic citizenship.

Non-compliance means expulsion from that nation!

This is not even that harsh, the situation could become a lot worse soon enough, then what will we do? As we get all these academic people (and governmental expert consultants) telling us how things will get better soon, hoping that they can avoid actually answering the question in earnest.

The Greek example of their detention centres might have been the most outspoken, but I feel certain that they are not the worst, not by a long shot. Real refugees want to work towards a better future, my solution seems to be less, but it still gives them a guaranteed future for them and their children.

The parliament of Australia site gave me two paragraphs that matter (at http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/rp/rp0001/01RP05).

Asylum seekers are drawn to particular countries by a range of obvious factors-proximity, family and ethnic community networks, employment opportunities and wage levels, generosity of welfare systems, levels of tolerance within existing societies, and the accessibility of determination systems. In Europe last year 70 per cent of asylum seekers sought protection in just four countries-Germany, Britain, Switzerland and the Netherlands. Acceptance rates are more revealing of a country’s political priorities, or its attitude to migration, or the weight of numbers it has had to deal with, or its diplomatic relations with ‘sending’ countries, than the genuineness of refugee claims” and “Australia is perhaps unique amongst Western countries in its capacity and willingness to remove failed asylum seekers; in other countries most failed asylum seekers simply remain. Australia has however joined other countries in attempting to discourage new applicants. The most minimal welfare payment, special benefit, is provided to illegally arrived asylum seekers even after they have been determined to be Convention refugees; they are provided with temporary visas with no family reunion entitlements; and they are denied access to settlement services tailored for and provided free to off-shore refugees

In my view refugees would (read: should) willingly go to any place that will accept them, this information gives a slightly different view. It is also interesting that the information is incorrect. The Dutch numbers are going down, whilst the Swedish numbers were going up. Moreover, the Swedish numbers are over 25% higher, yet the premise of the writ is not strongly affected. In this light we will see that the economies of the large 6, Germany, France, United Kingdom, Sweden, the Netherlands and Switzerland will soon change stronger and stronger if large changes are not made. Reasoning is that ‘in earnest’ (not in condemnation of any kind), refugees are an economic burden. They often cannot speak the language, the culture is different and there will be other moments that will stop them from becoming an asset to any future (most important their own future).

The solution that I am proposing might seem ‘inhumane’, but they are cast in places where people are less likely to take advantage of them. They will be in places helping their new nation and as such themselves as well and they will get exposed to a strong impulse of skills, language and cultural foundations that will only propel them stronger in future. In that light their children will already be eligible for schools and will help them build even stronger foundations.

Is my plan the best? No, it is not, but by giving it to large industries, who gave a massive part of that to their own members of the board is certainly never going to be a solution. This is not some anti-industry chant. The issue is that life in any environment requires equilibrium. A ‘coalition’ and politicians with their ‘after-elected’ need, as I personally see it, have been uniting for the need of a few and that need has been answered for these few to such an extent that the many are now no longer regarded as essential. We have now entered into the realm of trimming. Not the trimming of the fat, but the trimming of non-consumers and in the short minded view of the industry, those, of whom they think no one needs. But in that same view we will also trim our humanity, reduced to be workers, for the lessened good of consuming.

My view is not a good one, but as I see it, it beats where we are moving towards. In the end, is my view just an exaggerated negative view? I personally wish it was so, but consider the following facts:

External debt and population

  1. Germany – 5.5 trillion – 81m
  2. France – 5.7 trillion – 64m
  3. United Kingdom – 9.5 trillion – 65m
  4. Sweden – 1.1 trillion – 10m
  5. Netherlands – 2.5 trillion – 17m
  6. Switzerland – 1.6 trillion – 8m

Now take the next part in close (but sceptical consideration), one report claims that for the UK servicing the debt costs a mere £43bn, which amounts to the entire defence spending of the UK. The UK collected a forecasted 650 billion in taxation last year, taking 6% of the budget away just to keep Even Steven, so if the UK wants to move forward they need to budget on 90% whilst collecting the 100% forecasted part. It is quite the miracle to make that happen. Now the UK and Germany are doing reasonably well (compared too many other nations), but they too have issues. When we look at Sweden and the Netherlands; that image swifts a lot faster in a downward spiral. Perhaps some will remember the issues Switzerland and their currency had a little over a month ago in my article ‘A seesaw for three‘ on January 18th 2015 (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2015/01/18/a-seesaw-for-three/)

We now see the picture adding up to a lot more hardship, and add to that the refugees:

  1. Germany 571K – 144
  2. France 210K – 310
  3. United Kingdom – 194K – 319
  4. Sweden – 86K – 106
  5. Netherlands – 75K – 222
  6. Switzerland – 50K – 154

Now the view is almost complete. So for Germany we see 571,000 refugees, which means one refugee per 144 non refugees. The 144 pay for the way of one refugee. We could think that this is easy, but now consider that taxation is down, so the required money is not getting in (for various reasons). Now we see the problem, how can any government continue to support a sliding scale? This is not about fairness, because it is not fair on the refugee. I will be on the first line stating this, but when the bills are due, fairness will no longer be a factor. If we want to resolve the refugee solution, so that we all can continue giving them a future, something must give way. We can hope for a much better economy, but that is a ludicrous fantasy, even if the economy suddenly upgrades by 15%, these nations will still be hurt by the overspending and the consequential bills that became the headache for well over a decade.

So in my view we either change the way the refugee issues are addressed, or soon thereafter Australia will not be the only one sending back refugees, with the consequential nightmare that such actions will bring.

So as I contemplate the words of Juan Mendez, I wonder if Mr Mendez has considered the dangers of true torture when funds run truly dry on a near global basis. We all need to look at how it can be made better as we all should consider such steps, but in addition, no one seems to be looking at the cost of it all, yet the pressures of the rising costs of helping refugees getting a future are not being addressed in this economy, why not?


Leave a comment

Filed under Law, Media, Politics

The Cat and the Bacon

I have written about the economy on several occasions, I always proclaimed that it was pure insight as I saw it and that I do not have a degree in economy, I am an analyst. Yet today these borders of non-knowledge might get stretched a little further than previously shown. Today is all about the Euro!

I personally never believed it to be a good idea. We saw how all these politicians were proclaiming on how ‘good’ it was for the economy. Was it? You see, it might not matter for the bakery on the corner, the grocer next door or the butcher across the street. It matters to the giants of industry and how it benefits there bottom line, the extra coin for the members of the board, not for the people in the stores, that image tended to be a virtual one, it virtually did not matter at all!

I saw how the change of coin, from the Dutch guilder, things suddenly seemed to be 50% cheaper (2 guilders equalled one euro), but the math is easily made there. What those people experienced that buying a chicken on the market was 6 guilders, it became 3 euro’s, but then what? In a little less than 4 years that chicken from the same dealer ended up being 6 Euro’s. An annual 25% hike in prices. The chicken example is a little extreme and many articles did not raise that quickly. Some will mention the issues of milk in the Netherlands, but that is an issue much more complex and the Euro itself is only a small fragment there.

So, could I be wrong?

That is centre in this debate. I could be wrong, but it is very likely that we are all looking into the wrong direction. It would be nice to blame places like Greece, and they are definitely having an effect, yet the issue is not the EEC, it is more and more pointing towards America. You see, we are all in a bad shape, no one is denying that, yet in American, things have not gotten any better for a long time. Let’s face it, some people are now shooting at the police for fun, or for reasons of aggravation and despair. The people in America are suffering in many ways, but the all holier than DOW keeps on rising in addition, their currency is massively on the up, which under the issues showing, seems a little too good to be true, it an assumption, but is it fair and correct?

That remains to be seen, when we look at the Guardian, we see (at http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/jan/08/euro-dollar-1999-levels-deflation-oil), the following: “Recent data for the Eurozone has proved weak, with inflation falling and unemployment rising. Italy remains in recession while France has seen consumer and business confidence wane. Only Spain and Germany among the major economies have appeared to gain in strength, though Berlin has failed to kick-start GDP growth and Spain still suffers from an unemployment rate of 25%“, these are facts, they are not in denial, but where are the results of the UK (which were not great)? You see, these facts are true, but there is more to consider (besides Greece dragging the EU down). What about Sweden and the Netherlands? Not the greatest economies compared to the big 4, but still sizeable ones, we can admit that they are all struggling, yet the fact that we see a ‘propagated’ booming economy in America needs to be addressed too.

Who statistically has a job?

When we consider an article in Forbes last August, where we see “My friend and the waitress are victims of a massive but hidden problem called underemployment. Watching falling unemployment numbers being reported at 6.2%, down from nearly 10% four years earlier, is simply misleading“, attached to a headline ‘Tackling The Real Unemployment Rate: 12.6%‘ (at http://www.forbes.com/sites/louisefron/2014/08/20/tackling-the-real-unemployment-rate-12-6/), we get to see the picture that the people are living, Wall Street is ignoring and  the current administration of the US is misrepresenting. So is the Euro doing this bad, or is it dragged down by a misrepresenting nation carrying a 17 trillion dollar debt? By the way, did we not see something similar with Tesco and a few hundred millions misrepresented? How did THAT turn out?

When we see this quote in Forbes we see the real danger “741,000 discouraged workers – workers not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them – are included within the list of marginally attached people. Another 7.5 million were not considered unemployed because they were employed part-time for economic reasons. Those people are also called involuntary part-time workers – working part-time because their hours were cut back or because they were unable to secure a full-time job“. The danger is twofold, how many of the 741,000 are over 50? It seems that companies, especially those with younger, inexperienced executives are afraid to hire people with skills and know how. In regards to the 7.5 million part time workers, does that include those Wal-Mart people, who need to rely on food stamps and all kinds of other support systems? I am not debating their need, more that the owners each walked away with well over a billion in 2013, whilst its staff was on governmental food stamps. How does that ‘boom’ your economy? It almost reads like ‘gangbang’ for your buck whilst the governmental administration bends over, a lack of fairness on more than one front, one could state!

Booking a balance!

You see, the unbalance goes a lot further, the US as a nation can float its currency, this is not a bad thing, normally every nations does it to some extent, to weather a really bad time, so that business and consumer is not hit with weird spikes, it is an issue that has happened for a long time and it will continue to happen, yet the Euro does not have this privilege, these economies are set to what is done in Bruxelles (Brussels), and as such, it is likely impacted by spikes to some extent. However, as their currency is spiking downwards against the Dollar, which seems to be decently overvalued, we get a new danger that the drag will continue, whilst no one seems to be looking and the bubbled version of the US Dollar. So is my non-economic view correct, right or wrong? Yes, there are three options, because, what is correct may still not be right.

Consider, that the Euro nations are not doing so well, which is true after all, that fact does not make the dollar better does it? It is correct that the dollar looks better because the Yen and the Euro looks less good, but the economy in America is not booming, if it were, we would see a lot more people gainfully employed without the need for government support, you see, here we get to the matter on what is correct and what is right. If the US is having a virtual boom, we are judging the US on merits of misrepresentation, which by the way might not be illegal, but should an economy not be held to its cost as well? The US debt is still increasing; the people (a large amount) are not paid to a level of being self-sufficient. We see an economy that had made the thirteen amendment in 1865, there we see “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction“, in 1867 the US got the Peonage Act of 1867, where Congress abolished “the holding of any person to service or labor under the system known as peonage”, as well as specifically banning “the voluntary or involuntary service or labor of any persons as peons, in liquidation of any debt or obligation, or otherwise”, now this all sounds pretty clear, and having a job is not this, but when a population is forced to work for scraps, whilst still requiring food stamps, it seems that we now have an issue. no one is a slave, but under the conditions where the very rich grow their fortune at well over 30%, whilst those on average grow less than 2%, we should clearly see that the balance of fair play is no longer anywhere in sight. I am not against making profit, it is a capitalistic form that has merit, yet when we see six members of a family, each making a 9 figure number, whilst the 1% of America it employs makes less than the line of poverty, we need to ask serious questions. In addition, as we see a group where they deal in articles that are from questionable sources (at http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2014/jun/10/supermarket-prawns-thailand-produced-slave-labour), where the quote “A six-month investigation has established that large numbers of men bought and sold like animals and held against their will on fishing boats off Thailand are integral to the production of prawns (commonly called shrimp in the US) sold in leading supermarkets around the world, including the top four global retailers: Walmart, Carrefour, Costco and Tesco“, we are confronted with a governmental issue, where it allows for profit at expense of its own industries in Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi. We can acknowledge that the oil spills have been detrimental to the health of the industry, but when the big players get their goods overseas, how can any economy recover, especially as these overseas players (as implied by the Guardian), can rely on profits through slave labour. This goes further than just the shrimps, other food items or clothing. It shows a disconnection from the people, you see economies are more than just behemoths, we could see them as parasitic in nature, which sounds wrong, but is actually very correct. The retailer lives off the people, but can only do so if the people can spent. It is a symbiotic relationship; it requires the host to remain alive. Large businesses have forgotten about that, they focus on where the profit is, not on the required equilibrium, so as places like India grew form a third world market into a super economy.

Cycles of equilibrium

The people outsourcing, seem to forget that its own population is every bit as important, so as that group falter, so will businesses slowly but surely. As we see that cycle progress, is it not strange that the US Economy remains booming? A nation with many people unemployed; even more people in a state of poverty; 15% in poverty, this gets us a little more than one in seven in poverty, meaning that big business is now relying on revenue based on the remaining 5 out of 7. It looks nice in a statistical model, but as the overall quality of life goes down, that group of 5 will dwindle down too, when that happens, the economy will falter in new unprecedented ways, leaving the only option that a few people walk away with all the money they can carry to their own island and the rest is left without anything. This can be read as misrepresentation as well, but is it far-fetched? that part is not a given until we see an actual economy that truly improves, which means that the poverty line descents, people will start having a liveable income, that will give rise to shops needed and more jobs created and all that opts for the US national debt to go down by a lot, something that this administration has not achieved, more important, it might take 2-3 administrations for that debt to be addressed in any way, shape or form, which only fuels the wealth of banks and financial players. If it is addressed too quickly, the poverty line could soar far further then 21%, giving an instant crises in the US that goes beyond the imaginations of many and will be one nightmare Wall street did not foresee to this extent. Yet how would that affect the Euro? Well in two ways, as the US people will become more and more desperate for jobs, suddenly the economy looks even better on our grass, but it is an ‘economy’ for the wealthy living, the rest will see a further drop in living conditions (an assumption on my side)

So as big business ties the cat to the bacon (meaning: opportunity knocks), we must wonder how these elements call for a booming economy as an economy is reliant on people spending money, buying items and none remain to do just that.

You see, there seems to be a fluctuation on what an economy is (seriously!).

The first one we see is: “the state of a country or region in terms of the production and consumption of goods and services and the supply of money“, which is what we all believe it to be, yet the second meaning “careful management of available resources“, which we can take as “offering good value for money” and “a financial saving” last there is “the cheapest class of air or rail travel“. Weird or not, they all apply. I got them straight from the Google dictionary.

Now when we mash them we get: “the National state in terms of the production, the cheapest way possible, whilst advocating good value for money, whilst ensuring the highest efficiency in regards to managing our available resources, whilst optimising consumption of goods and services, ensuring the best supply of money through contribution“. Does that not sound very familiar? You see, it seems like a booming economy, if you are getting the money. The consumer is left with the option, whilst not guaranteeing a pool where such sufficient income can be maintained, almost a death pool of discontinued certainty.

So, how did we move away from the Euro? Well, I actually did not, you see, these elements have been a factor with American companies all over Europe, now consider how much taxation they did not have to make due to tax havens and specific invoicing? You see, a government is depending on its coffers to be filled so that there is a growth and continuation of an economy, whilst these corporations are now stating that this inherent side of the symbiotic relationship was not theirs to care for. Now we see and a loss of balance as well as a first glance on how dislodging an economy can have long lasting effects. As the Euro has less ‘floatation’ options and as some unbalanced it even further, we now see no options on the Euro side, whilst the Dollar has legal options to float its currency, unbalancing the amount further, the upped representation does the rest!

Blame Game

Now, it is important to see that I am NOT blaming the dollar for the Euro, yet it must be said that those behind the Dollar (businesses) have presented themselves overly good, so there is a secondary effect, whilst we see more and more often a changing scale of what is to be reported on. Let us be clear, several EEC nations have done this in the past, but the balance is now changing further and further, giving no one a clear view of what is real, we see presentations that are all a little out of whack, so as Europe starts its plan of credit easing, we will see the numbers jump, yet in what direction cannot be predicted (not by me at least), because, if investors walk away ‘en mass’, no credit easing will do any trick, if you doubt that then look at India, is it not weird that NTT DoCoMo / TaTa, the big winner of 2013/2014 suddenly wanted to dump its one billion share? Is it not strange that in this ‘booming’ economy, all are looking on the inside? Is a booming economy not about growth? So as we ‘see’ a growing economy, is that not (usually) a sign of growth? So why are the mobile providers T-Mobile, AT&T, Sprint and Verizon all steering clear of the Indian market that is seemingly up for grabs?

So is the US economy booming, or is it going boom-boom?


Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Law, Politics

When we lose the plot

That is actually the first thought I had when I read the thoughts of Ed Miliband in today’s Guardian. The view ‘House of Lords not representative of much of the country’ (at http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/oct/31/miliband-devolution-elected-second-chamber-regions), of course, as the statement is made on Halloween, or All Hallows’ Eve if we go by the old title is a moment when we see the brain dead zombies walk the street and Ed Miliband’s statement fits right alongside with it! OK, I apologise Ed that was not very nice of me. You are entitled to your view, I should not attack it, but I can disagree with it.

So why all the zombie references?

Well, you see, as we see nations being less and less about proper long term planning, we see short term stopgaps that lead nowhere and they all cost a bundle. If you are in the UK and you stare towards the setting sun, you might, if you live westwards enough you get to see the Atlantic river, on the other side is a former colony that is ALL about short term resolutions that go nowhere. They are allowed to do that of course, yet, overall it costs much for all, many will never be helped and few are around filling their pockets with cash whilst not solving anything. Let’s call that colony ‘little Britain’ (not Ireland mind you, which is another place all together). Now, if you go on towards the west as far as you can, past those hills called ‘the Rockies’ you see another river called the Pacific river, and yours truly (that would be me), is living on the other side of it on an island called Australia!

Now, we have the same issue the Americans of Little Britain have. More and more of this is getting to be about short term solutions that are not really solutions. We need a long term solution in government, like the UK has; it is called the House of Lords!

Many tried to do away with it and some just called it ‘change’, but so far the verdict is: “However, no consensus on the future of the upper chamber emerged“.

You see, the House of Lords seems to be up, up and removed, but the future of the UK is decently stable and safe because they look out for all Brits, those who pay tax and those who don’t. You see, as I see it, the basement of Parliament (also known as the House of Commons), want change, they want it quicker and quicker. But as they are planning their political agendas, as they are too eager in securing an extremely comfortable future by enabling commerce too easy, too much and too often, the House of Lords stops them when needed so that the other people, those who are in the eyes of commerce and retail revenue ‘not that valuable’, yet they too are British and deserve protection, the Lords looks after all of them.

I understand the frustration from Miliband at times too well, but many forget the expression “Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished“, life is improved in small steps, the Lords will look after all Britons.

This is at the foundation and Australia misses out, just as America does. However, for Australia there is hope and a solution, which I will address down later on.

I particularly liked the following quote: “In a speech on Saturday Miliband will highlight figures showing that the House of Lords is failing to represent large parts of Britain. “When people say that they are turned off from politics and that it doesn’t represent them, we have to do something about it”“.

Eddie, my dear fellow, please explain to me the words you had during the Scottish referendum and now, I read “The Tories want to go further on the handover of tax levying powers than Labour do“, so why are you not on board? The reasons might be very valid, but what are they? So here we see that in past referendum times, devolution seems to be not all that de-evolved, it must make them tartan fellows mighty happy that you are on the case, is it not?

You see, as I see it, Scotland remains a factor for Labour and so it should, but as certain issues move over to Scotland Miliband is set having to fight on two fronts and as such, he does not have the reserves, the energy and the battle plan, so now we see this (this is all purely conjecture on my side).

You see, all these parties are for the better part short term, one perhaps two rounds after that usually the other takes over. The House of Lords is all about long term. Anyone stating that long term is not for now is basically deceiving you, because short term is about the now, the commissions, the bonuses and so on. Like some half-baked sales person in software solutions selling now what they can as they need the revenue, the forecast and the bonus. It is never long term and whatever long term they claim to make is nothing more than the final push for the end of quarter sale, end of year sale and then the new quarter goals. It is a limiting vision that is in the end doomed to falter. It is particularly interesting how these people all need +15-20%, without ever expecting saturation, almost like the well that never dries. Go to a well increase the drain of water by +20% each year and see how long until there is no more water. Then what will you do? The house of Lords is there to see that when faced with these short sighted people, that someone will arrange for options of additional depth or extra irrigation towards the well.

And let me be frank, this is not just about Labour or Liberal Democrats, the Conservatives will have a similar short-sightedness in this regards, which is why we need a solution like the House of Lords. I rechecked the roll today, and yes, my name is not there between Lord Vallance of Tummel and Lord Verjee. My first thought was, ‘good grief’, once I am elected as an official Law lord, I will be placed between two Liberal Democrats. Well, there goes the neighbourhood! 🙂

Yes, we must keep a sense of humour about it all. Anyway, short sightedness, in the UK there is a solution, but here in Australia there is not. I do believe we need a long term option here, You see, Australians have a Senate, yet, unlike Canada who designed it to be like the House of Lords, someone here on this island thought it was a good idea to take the American model. I respectfully disagree, however the Australian model seems stronger than the American one (seems, is used as I never did an in depth study of both next to one another).

Yet, we were talking about long term plans. I believe that true long term plans might come from a Mayoral party, a group of Lord Mayors that decide on long term plans. A Mayor often needs to think long term and as such, a different course of actions might work for Australia. Now, I am not on the side of our Lord Mayor Clover-Moore, I think she overspends by a lot, there are other issues I disagree with and as such I did not vote for her, but I admit that her Sustainable Sydney 2030, is a balsy plan. Getting the roads more and more to be ready for bicycles is one way to get Sydney moving, now they are getting light-rail over George street and when the busses are a mere past tense on George street we will see true change. It is visionary, no doubt about it. It is long term and could change the life of people in Sydney for the better, I should know because as I grew up in Europe, the use of a bicycle is one I am very familiar with.

So is my idea out in never never land? Not sure, I am willing to admit that it is and perhaps the Senate does think long term, but I do not remember seeing too much of that happening, which made me think of a solution that is not at the top of a pinnacle, but at the very base of it and are our lord Mayors not at the foundation of any city and our lives?

So my advice to Ed Miliband: let it be dude! (Yes, I called him dude)

Let us all find solution together and let the future be long term, short term thinking might get us to the next crossing again and again, whilst we learn after 10 crossings that we could have saved a massive amount by turning left, right, right and left and avoid a dozen of them crossings. And in many occasions it is not about getting to the road at the end faster, but to get there without too many obstructions, the rest we will figure out in the course of the day.

Yet, I am not done yet with Mr Miliband. There are two more quotes to look at.

And it cannot be right that those peers who do live outside London are less likely to be from great cities like Birmingham, Liverpool and Bristol than they are to be living in less-populated rural areas” and “We will make the second chamber of parliament truly a senate of the regions and nations of our whole country“. Really? How is that in any way a guarantee for a better quality of politics? When we see that not the best in this field, but the best one from Shropshire is chosen, then we will truly see how bad some choices are. As such, I cannot identify for one iota with the idea of Ed Miliband. Yet, in the end, perhaps I am the one who lost the plot. I will let the reader decide and I hope that they will vote for whatever solution is the best, not the cheapest or the most comfortable.


Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Law, Politics