Tag Archives: IKEA

Darkness through inaction

I had the weirdest dream, it was dark. When I woke up, the cat woke me up and I was slightly weirded out. Everything was pitch black. Was I dead? Was I blind? I looked at my watch, and the time was bright green, I was not blind. I looked around, it took a lot longer than usual. It was the darkest black. I slowly walked to the wall, I turned the lights off and on, nothing happened. Then I remembered my emergency flashlight (better safe than sorry) and it gave some light. I looked around, everything was black. I walked to the windows and looked out, outside was black too, yet this was London, close to Hyde Park, no light anywhere. I walked to the kitchen and got the emergency tea lights and the candleholders. Over a dozen were placed all over the apartment, all IKEA and all working. Three in the living room, one in the bedroom, one in the kitchen, all whilst checking what had happened to the stove, there was gas so I placed the filled kettle on the stove. I inspected the apartment and I got a decent insight in the damage. There was no heating, there was no light, but there was gas and there were candles. 

This is not imaginary, people in Lebanon know what I am talking about and when we consider the Independent (at https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/gas-prices-rise-electricity-bills-b1935122.html) and they give us ‘Gas price spike will add £29bn to UK electricity bills next year, analysis finds’ yet this is only half the story, you see there is a growing shortage of electricity and it is getting worse. I had hoped for 2-3 more years, but that is less and less likely. So even as my version will not apply to many, but some will face it, it is now becoming heating versus light versus food. Yet there is a workaround. I spoke about it in the past. Even as Elon Musk has an advantage with his car battery, he is not alone and for plenty of applications there are alternatives. Consider a battery, rechargeable batteries, the size of 4 D-type batteries in a row. A stage where you can have one, a harness of two of those beauties linked to charge systems. And there are several solutions. In WW2 people used bicycles. So your home trainer becomes a more powerful charger. There are of course the solar panels, but it is not a solution for all, some will put some version of a wind-vane on their roof. All options to charge the batteries. So when we see that, we also need a new light source. Emergency lighting based on LED systems will come more and more into play, some are more festive and there are several solutions there. It is however a solution I saw in Sweden that could be the larger station. 

Swedish plug

This plug is a lot smaller than others and there is the station, an additional power net in every home and the people with decent DIY skills can do it themselves. And in the beginning it will be merely light and chargers, but over time we will see more and more shift to the low power consumption curve. In the Netherlands electricity prices went up by 57%, so how long until that is a setting no one can afford? Some state (using ‘could’) that electricity prices in the UK will rise by 30%, do you think you have a lot of time? And then we need to consider both the US and Canada, they might not be in the same boat, but they will see the prices rise too. As such the ideas I am giving you now are not new and not unique and taking notice of these dangers sooner rather than later is also important. There are solutions now and some are not elegant, not the prettiest, but they work and that will always be better than sitting it out in complete darkness. And in the stage where you can have 10 4 Watt LED’s are the equivalent of 10 30 Watt lightbulbs, it  is not a lot, but it might be enough and as the batteries are stronger you can have 8 hours with 10 8 Watts that compare to 10 60 Watt bulbs. Even though the bedrooms will suffice with 4 Watt solutions. And this situation is not that far away. The price hikes will force people to take that stand soon enough. And the sooner you can start, the better off you are because when 20,000,000 start on the same day the only people who will end up with lights are those willing to pay the 450% markup, commerce taught us that lesson in a pretty harsh way in the past already.

Feel free to take no notice, but when you forgot your Tea lights at IKEA and you wake up in complete darkness, it will be too late, I hope you will never face that. Yes, I admit that this setting in London is remotely small, but at present it is no longer zero, which is a setting you did not face a year ago, neither did you face a 30% price hike and that is now (by some) a speculated setting a mere year away.

Consider what you have, what you face and what could be and arm yourself for that situation, your choice, your consequence. And also consider the optional savings you make especially in a 30% price hike when you have a solution that takes 75% less energy, even if the battery is the last  part you get, you will already be making a saving.

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Is it your taste?

Taste is a peculiar thing, it is more than personal at times and sometimes it is massively selective, I for one loved to try my new girlfriend having a Chicken Vindaloo (before I went to Australia), or an Indonesian restaurant. You see, I need to know that she at least likes the dishes I love. I had an ex who hated pizza and therefore I ended up not having pizza for a year. And that setting of taste (and balance) continues over a larger field. So when the BBC gives me ‘GB News: Several brands pull advertising from news channel’, it gets me in two ways (both with happiness), the first is seen in “it has faced criticism from campaigners such as the group Stop Funding Hate, who say its launch brings highly partisan Fox News-style programming to the UK”, yes it all seems nice, but haters will be haters and the choices some channels make are at times proven to be hateful, the other media makes sure that it is hateful. And this can happen in a whole range of ways and the media is all over that part. For the largest reasons they do not want another mouth eating from the digital advertising dish. 

Andrew Neil (chairman) gives us “In an opening monologue to viewers on Sunday night, Neil said GB News would aim to “puncture the pomposity of our elites in politics, business, media and academia and expose their growing promotion of cancel culture for the threat to free speech and democracy that it is”” is not hateful, yet the part I have stated several times in the past and even yesterday is seen in “puncture the pomposity of our elites in media and expose their growing promotion of cancel culture”, I did not phrase it like that, but it does fit. Consider these two parts, the first is an alleged attack on Jamal Khashoggi, a journalist no one cares about and the media is hounding it for the longest time, more importantly the UN is helping push the media agenda on this via some essay writer called Agnes Calamard. Yet the actions of Martin Bashir, who as seen by a lot of people as a massive reason of het divorce and ultimately led to her death is pushed outside of the media limelight, moreso as an inquiry showed him to be manipulative using forged documents and he is not even arrested (not even pro forma). Andrew Neil has a point, will he have a case? Time will tell, I remain skeptical of nearly all media outlets that are not presented by trained journalists, morning entertainment channels giving us filtered information.

The second part is actually not good for Andrew Neil. We see Kopparberg and Octopus Energy cancelling what they had seemingly placed, as such even as the channel is only now on the air, these people did not do their due diligence, and even I cannot call whether GB News is actually hateful. Yet there is a place in the media for Fox News, not my favourite channel but I believe that we can only see actual news when we are not depending on Al Jazeera and Reuters. In this the other side of that coin is that Kopparberg, Open University, Ovo Energy and Ikea had made suspensions hiding behind “not knowingly booked slots on the channel”, implying that they advertise without investigation, as such, how stupid is that? I believe that there is more behind that. I would speculate that not unlike the old PS2 versus Dreamcast issue in 1999, some media outlets might have stated that if you are with them, you cannot be with us. I can never prove that, but I was a witness to the PS2-Dreamcast event. So it is not too far-fetched. 

Oh and by the way, so far there is the indication that GB News and Andrew Neil is getting more news flak from other media that Martin Bashir so far has. I wonder why that is, especially after these same sources had no issues posting whatever speculative (not evidence) based posting on the Jamal Khashoggi case. Do not take my word for that, investigate yourself! I do not care whether you watch GB News, that is your choice, I merely wonder how much of the news media has not been trustworthy for the longest of times and that includes the views of Piers Morgan. You see I avoided the interview for my own reasons, he had a point of view, and I am not judging him to be valid or invalid, it was a point of view, he is allowed HIS point of view and we see thousands of complaints on a point of view. So how many complaints did these people lodge against Martin Bashir? And that was before I saw ‘Meghan Markle’s claim ‘doesn’t add up’ – ‘Strange’ remark in Oprah interview picked apart’ from the Express (at https://www.express.co.uk/news/royal/1447782/meghan-markle-oprah-winfrey-interview-queen-elizabeth-II-prince-harry-lee-cohen-news-VN). There we were given “Mr Cohen pointed to a moment in the Oprah Winfrey interview where Meghan said she was unaware of needing to curtsy the Queen and did not know the words to the UK national anthem. The political writer found it “odd”, stating he was given stringent protocol training when he met the Queen and questioned whether the Duchess of Sussex was overall willing to learn the new customs”, it is a point of view, but that also gives a rather large nudge towards Piers Morgan optionally might having a case. As I avoided the interview I cannot really say, but who else had that part Mr Cohen stated? Why was the rest of the media not all over that? Was it the ‘Awwwww’ moment? Now take these elements and you will see that there might be place for someone like GB News. Will it be on my list? Not sure, I will look at it initially via YouTube (as I am on the other side of the planet for now), yet its future will not be depending on the advertisers, it will largely be depending on the quality of journalism and that part is left out of the media consideration, at least the dozen articles I saw and none mentioned that part, I wonder why that is, don’t you?

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Epee and quarterstaff

It is an old riddle that goes back to the renaissance: ‘What do the Epee and quarterstaff have in common?’ The answer is that they extent reach. The lesson is that everything has its reach and the power remains when you do not exceed the 90% of it until you are either forced, or if you have a 100% certainty of causing a fatal hit. Making the mistake in those days meant certain death. Those days were not about points, it was not about bragging on besting a person, it was kill or be killed, plain and simple. A lesson that is 500 years old and Apple apparently never learned it. So in the Guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/apr/30/apple-iphone-sales-first-quarter-earnings) we see ‘Apple’s iPhone sales fall 17% in first quarter as flagship product struggles‘, what was interesting was: “The company made a profit of $11.6bn – ahead of expectations. But this quarter marked another quarterly decline in profit and revenue as the company struggled to move beyond the iPhone“, even as Apple is in a buyback phase to regain its heralded one trillion dollar company, there are still clouds in the background. It starts with the iPhone, an iPhone Xr 128GB is $1299, the not most powerful version of the iPhone Xs is $2049. Yet the competing Androids are $1499 (Google Pixel 3), $1599 (Huawei P30 pro) and $1699 (Samsung S10), those are all on the same, or in some regards on a more superior level; if we are concerned consumers and we are willing to step down a little we can get decently competitive phones for $449, that is what Apple is up against, you can shout all you want on how refined, elitist and top range your phone is, but the amount of people with that kind of cash available is dwindling down and Apple is realising that buying back stock and take control of the smacking they are about to get is indeed a wise choice, but so far my prediction remains that Apple is heading towards a 30% decline of net value is not unrealistic at all. Then there are the issues on the computer side of apple too. What Digital Trends called ‘Flexgate’ last January is still on the mind of many, and as they gave us the quote: “the stage light effect is caused by flaws with a cabling system that Apple uses to attach each MacBook display to the internals of the laptop. In MacBook models from 2016 and newer, Apple switched to a new flexible and thin ribbon cable, which over a long period of time can face fatigue and eventually tear as the lid is repeatedly opened and closed on the laptop” with additional information (at https://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/flexgate-issue-plaguing-some-macbook-pro-owners/) we see that Apple has played the ‘presentation innovation’ card slightly too visible, so now there is a backlash. Then there is bendgate (iPad Pro bending), then we get in addition the May 2018 class-action lawsuit that alleges that Apple has “failed and continues to fail to disclose” problems with its butterfly keyboard. It says Apple’s actions are violating several competition and regulatory laws, including California’s Unfair Competition Law and the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. The lawsuit is seeking damages for the class, as well as an acknowledgement by Apple that there’s a problem with its keyboard design. This case is not over and done with, because it will be a global problem soon enough, so the steps that Apple has to take will take a massive chunk on their value and profit reporting within the coming year. Al these actions whilst they have plenty more issues coming their way. Now in their defence, the entire Flexgate could have happened to anyone, but proper testing does give light to these dangers, it is interesting to note that IKEA might have a better quality testing department than Apple does, which shows that Scandinavians optionally have a better idea towards exceeding customer service and keeping proper tabs on quality. This all before you realise that Tech Insider reported ‘Apple is squirrelling away money to pay for lawsuits related to its iPhone ‘batterygate’ throttling scandal‘ (at https://www.businessinsider.com.au/iphone-batterygate-lawsuits-cause-apple-to-set-aside-money-2019-2) an issue that is still not done with and might not be done with until 2020. So when you see that list costing them optional billions, do you think that my view was unrealistic?

As they give us: “previous class-action suits have resulted in $US450 million judgments against the iPhone maker“, I feel certain that this will not get it done in this case and if they are really really lucky, it might only cost them $45 billion, you forget that the Euro courts are snapping at the heels of Apple as well, 27 nations all with a score of angry customers, we realise that there is always a cost to doing business and there is premium to pay when the limelight is set on what might call ‘intentional deceptive conduct’ and ‘batterygate’ fits that bill and then some. This is not the end; there is also indirect damage to come. This was given by Apple Insider with ‘Latest Facebook-related security breach finds millions of records exposed on Amazon servers‘, there we see (at https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/04/03/latest-facebook-related-security-breach-finds-millions-of-records-exposed-on-amazon-servers) that Apple was connected: “These include data sharing deals with companies like Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Sony, plus people being able to look up strangers based on phone numbers submitted for two-factor authentication“, so when we see data-sharing, we think it is only Facebook, but sharing goes in many directions and what did Apple share? the entire ‘people being able to look up strangers based on phone numbers submitted for two-factor authentication‘ implies that Apple optionally has a decent amount to answer for, or perhaps better stated, there is plenty of issues brought to light that the Apple legal teams need to ignore, deny or carefully phrase into another direction, there is only so many fines any company can live with before the larger population bails and if that happens before December 2019 than my prediction of 30% could end up being way too optimistic, but I keep a conservative view on the matters for now. Consider the steps that Apple has been making, their ‘new’ iMac Pro, it is a computer that starts at $7,299, whilst the normal new iMac, a computer that would satisfy 95% of all Apple users is a mere $2,799. Now, I am not opposed to an overpowered computer, but consider the cost of creating it, redesigning parts and making it look more expensive, do the amount of buyers rectify for that? Is the ROI curve not massively overstated and when we realise that, is a company where its marketing is insisting on annual innovation not out of control? What is the price tag of that you reckon? It becomes even more laughable when we consider a review (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YwYZvmYecI) where we see the MacRumors channel giving us at 5:30 that the iMac Pro (2017 model) exports 4K video in 2:44, whilst the normal iMac (2019 model) does the same thing in 2:31, it seems trivial, yet remember that there is a $7,299 versus $2,799 in play and within 2 years the value of $4,500 was lost to the user, as such the life time value of an iMac has pretty much gone into the basement taking out customer loyalty overnight. the last time I looked, looking cool for a year at the price of $4,500 was decently overrated for most people, and it makes for a business case that the iMac pro could be regarded as wasted investment for its consumers soon thereafter (in some places they refer to that as: ‘warranty until you exit the premises‘.

These are some of the issues that Apple is facing and there are a lot more issues (yet most of those are actually trivial). It is there that we return to the Guardian with: ‘the company struggled to move beyond the iPhone‘, that and the 2018 iPad Pro Bendgate issue does not help any and that is where we see that quality assessment has failed miserably. The need to look innovative, lighter and thinner means that testing becomes more and more important. So when the consumer was treated to ‘Apple releases an official statement on reports that some iPad Pros have come bent right out of the box’ on January 2019 with: “Relative to the issue you referenced regarding the new iPad Pro, its unibody design meets or exceeds all of Apple’s high quality standards of design and precision manufacturing.”, and as such the consumer feels duped to say the least. One source also gives us: “Apple claims that the bending can’t exceed more than 400 micron–“the width of fewer than four sheets of paper at most,” which is a “tighter specification for flatness than previous generations,” the note says.

The tech note further states that the antenna splits “may make subtle deviations in flatness more visible only from certain viewing angles that are imperceptible during normal use.”“, whilst the image from MacRumors (at https://www.macrumors.com/guide/ipad-pro-2018-bending-issue/) shows a bending issue close to 1,000% of what they claim, making the issue rise to the surface and also gives a much larger light of additional class actions that might be filed later this year if Apple does not change policy immediately, so is my 30% drop still off? I already gave some visibility to that (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/02/24/future-through-the-sub-line/) almost 3 months ago, and I have not noticed any clear loud actions by Apple Marketing to counter the damage that this issue was bringing.

It is not what Apple claims to do, it is the failing on a few levels, the marketing on several product lines and the neglect of services that shows that not only is it struggling to move beyond the iPhone, at present they have very few options left to them in any of the product lines to set any stage of ‘moving beyond’ and that too will suppress growth to a much larger degree, and optionally for a much longer time. All that whilst they should have known when they started the Pro and high priced iPhone series that they are selling to people who demand perfection and high end quality especially at the prices that they are selling it at, at that point your QA department is the most important department you have, not your marketing department.

It is the direct visibility when you extent beyond your reach, you get hammered down and you get hammered down hard, in the renaissance that apple individual would not be defeated, that person would merely be dead and forgotten, I hope that this is the lessons that apple takes to heart because the treasures of 5G are looming and Apple might be out in the cold soon enough. I reckon that the $4.5 billion payment to Qualcomm is making that obvious and clear to all, which is news that was released only hours ago with: “As pointed out by Axios, Qualcomm will record $4.5 to $4.7 billion in revenue from the Apple settlement, which includes a “cash payment from Apple and the release of related liabilities.”” (Source: MacRumors).

Apple still has a long way to go to get back on top, I wonder if they ever will.

 

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Vive la what?

France decided, Emmanuel Macron is now the President of France. I will not shout some ‘hack’ issue. I believe that France made a choice, how well the choice is, is something that the President-elect of France will have to prove to be. Not the lame statistics on how young he is. The Guardian gives us some of the optional bad news (at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/may/07/theresa-may-congratulates-macron-on-victory-as-eu-breathes-sigh-of-relief) where we see: “Happy that the French have chosen a European future. Together for a stronger and fairer Europe.” No, they did not and your rhetoric only is a first piece of evidence that the EU and the ECB are considering a former investment banker to be the reason to play your games, forcing people deeper in debt and slowly turning the EU into something despicable. For the most, the article is fine. Today will be all about congratulating President Macron, whilst those shaking hands, calling the Palace or sending letters are desperately trying to get a few political punches in. That is part of the game, yet the dangers due to the greedy need of the USA is about to become actually dangerous. Marine Le Pen could have sunk those dangers, although it would come with other issues, there is no denying that. Yet the economic health is going to be a first, in that Crédit Agricole, BNP Paribas and Natixis would guard against that happening to France (after they take care of themselves and their needs), yet will it be enough? The quote that President Macron is giving now is: “I do consider that my mandate, the day after, will be at the same time to reform in depth the European Union and our European project,” Macron had told reporters, adding that if he were to allow the EU to continue to function as it was would be a “betrayal”. It sounds nice, but over time and especially as we watch delay after delay will we see if he is actually made of stern stuff. Time will tell and there is no way that it would be regarded as fair to see any initial headway until at least 10 days post forming his government. Yet there is a side we must take heed from. It is seen in the quote “he spoke out against a “tailormade approach where the British have the best of two worlds” creating “an incentive for others to leave and kill the European idea, which is based on shared responsibilities”“, this sounds nice, but responsibility also implies accountability, a side that has been absent from the EU and the ECB with ongoing lack of transparency for the longest time, in that Brexit remains a valid step.

So why do I seem to be freaking out?

That is partially true. Not because of Marine Le Pen not making it, which might have solved a few things. It is the part I mentioned yesterday with the Financial Choice Act. As a cheat sheet (at http://media.mofo.com/files/uploads/Images/SummaryDoddFrankAct.pdf)

shows us: “The Dodd-Frank Act creates the Financial Stability Oversight Council (“Council”) to oversee financial institutions“, that part is now effectively gutted from the Dodd-Frank Act. The damage goes a lot further, yet as I see it, the people in the White House have just enabled the situation that what happened in 2004 and 2008 can now happen again. When that happens the Euro will take a massive hit too. With Brexit part of that damage can be averted and in layman non diplomatic terms, we can state that as JP Morgan is getting the hell out of Brexit, the damage they could potentially cause in the near future will be on the books for the places that they go to or remain in.

One of the dangers is seen in the key principles of the Financial Choice Act. With ‘2. Every American, regardless of their circumstances, must have the opportunity to achieve financial independence;‘ we can read it in a few ways, one of them being that this is the sales pitch where the Greater Fool can invest in something, using funds that person does not have whilst endangering whatever financial future they thought they might have had. It basically opens a door to get some of the suckers’ bled dry fast. In addition with ‘3. Consumers must be vigorously protected from fraud and deception as well as the loss of economic liberty;‘, I do not see protection, I see a setting where basic protection is in place, yet as we have seen with the issue in 2008, the amount of people who lost it all whilst prosecution failed to protect the people and convict the ‘transgressors’ nearly 100% is just too stunning, and it is a lot more dangerous now as the global population has nowhere near any level of reserve of protection compared to the last time around. In addition, when larger firms start playing this game, they will drag whomever they passively claimed to protect (like retirement plans, like mortgages they held) with them.

There is another side which takes a little longer to explain. Yesterday someone tweeted an image I remembered when I grew up. You see it is all linked to what I was part of in the 80’s. I saw the application of segregation, isolation and assassination in a less nice way. It drew me back to my childhood, when I was introduced to practices by the Nazi’s in WW2 during my primary school history lessons. To identify the Jewish people, they were told to wear the Yellow Star of David. When I saw the image my thoughts started to align, unlike the puzzlement of the population at large in 1941-1943 as the star was made mandatory in several nations, the people were uncertain to the matter, with the exception of the Dutch underground who would not trust any German for even a millimetre, they were able to hide 25% of the Jews, so in the end well over 100,000 Jews were deported. From those only a little over 5,000 survived. The Dutch underground was able to keep close to 30,000 hidden, with well over 2/3rd surviving the war. Most people, would not learn of the actual fate of the deported Jews until much later, many remained in disbelief for many years after the end of WW2 in 1945. You see, it is that phase that I feel we are in now, we seem to be in disbelief as laws are past to give a sector of industry more leeway, whilst they (according to some sources) made 157 billion in profit and that is in the US for 2016. So you want to open the tap for a system that is less regulated, non-trustworthy and have shown in 2008 to embrace all greed at the expense of anyone else? How is that a good idea?

 

 

So what evidence is there?

Well, there is Senator Warren (Democrat for Massachusetts) who called it an ‘insult to families’, in addition we see “so that lobbyists can do the bidding of Wall Street“, which is still a political statement. When we see the partial part (at http://financialservices.house.gov/uploadedfiles/financial_choice_act-_executive_summary.pdf), we see “Provide an “off-ramp” from the post-Dodd-Frank supervisory regime and Basel III capital and liquidity standards for banking organizations that choose to maintain high levels of capital. Any banking organization that makes a qualifying capital election but fails to maintain the specified non-risk weighted leverage ratio will lose its regulatory relief” It is the very first bullet point and leaves me with the situation that banks have no right to relief when they take a certain path, yet they still get to gamble. I especially like the part in section 4. “Make all financial regulatory agencies subject to the REINS Act, bi-partisan commissions, and place them on the appropriations process so that Congress can exercise proper oversight.” Yet, the REINS Act only passed the Senate, yet is not law at present, in this it is called on to do what? If the Financial Choice Act is set into law before the REINS Act, the US will have a gap the size of the flipping Grand Canyon, in addition, from the McIver Institute we see the opposition from the Democrats with “The REINS bill is similar to legislation moving through congress, but with lower thresholds“, yes, that has proven to be a good idea in the past! Still it is a view of Democrats versus Republicans and it is a Republican government (House, Senate & White House), so wherever are the clear academic dangers? We get that from Mike Rothman, president of the North American Securities Administrators Association and Minnesota commissioner of commerce with “It is clearly evident that the changes contemplated by the bill would significantly undermine and compromise the ability of regulators to effectively enforce financial laws and regulations“, whilst the I saw the term “this voluntary state-federal collaborative framework“, so the collaboration is voluntary, not mandatory. In the last decade, when have we seen a proper level of protection in a voluntary state of any matter?

The beginning of the dangers are shown by the Consumerist, which took a look at version 2.0 of what many regard to be a travesty. In this we see:

  • Require the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to get congressional approval before taking enforcement action against financial institutions
  • Restrict the Bureau’s ability to write rules regulating financial companies
  • Revoke the agency’s authority to restrict arbitration
  • Revoke the CFPB’s authority to conduct education campaigns
  • Prevent the Bureau from making public the complaints it collects from consumers in its Consumer Complaint Database

The one I had a stronger issue with is the one that tosses responsible spending around. The issue ‘Remove requirements under the Durbin Amendment that guided how much credit card networks could charge retailers for processing debit card transactions‘, so basically by charging stronger on debit cards, people will see a need to pay cash or force the credit card risk on people who for several reasons prefer not to do so. In addition the restrictions to arbitration will give leeway to Financial Institutions to avoid all kinds of courts as the victims (called consumers and investors in this case) any right to hold the financial institutions to account. It is rigging even stronger an unbalanced system. Marc Jarsulic, Vice President for Economic Policy at the Center for American Progress called this ‘a system that removes protections against taxpayer-funded bailouts, erodes consumer protections, and undercuts necessary tools to hold Wall Street accountable‘, which was already an issue at present making it a lot worse. It seems that the junior workers of 2008 are now in a place where they would prefer to fill their pockets before their luck runs out. The last bit is purely speculative from my side and it might take until 2020 until I am proven correct, yet at present 2 years is a long time to await the dangers of a greed driven system to get a little greedier. It is in that that segregation from the Euro will become essential soon enough, especially as there is no one muzzling the ECB and its crazy need to spend funds that they do not have and will not have for years to come. As for the news we see appear at present on Bloomberg shows my correctness from another side. At https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-05-07/a-reverse-trump-tax-plan-delivers-an-economic-miracle-in-sweden, we see how a reverse of the Trump ideal works a miracle in Sweden. Now, it sounds a little too good to be true and it is. You see, I am not against the principle that Sweden has, yet in Scandinavian terms, the Swedes are uncanny social. I once joked that a woman can get married, after a year she gets the bun in the oven and gets paid maternity leave. If she starts making buns non-stop, she will never work another day (as long as she gets pregnant immediately after giving birth), 20 years and 22 kids later, she still has an income, a sound and secure retirement fund with only one year of work. It is almost true and I admit far far fetched. Yet the social side of Sweden allows for this. Because that one person will be the utter outlier in any statistical graph. The Swedish solution works in a social educated country like Sweden. In America which fosters self-centeredness and greed, this system would be abused at the drop of any hat and the system would collapse. You see, Bloomberg does not mention, that unlike America, companies in Sweden do not shun taxation (IKEA seemingly being the exemption to that rule), which is also a huge difference. In addition, Swedish Civil Law has a sizeable extensive system of Administrative Law which would also contribute. As we see commerce in Sweden increase, the Swedes will automatically feel the brunt of that in a positive way (as I personally see it). Yet it is not all good and summer there, as Magdalena Andersson faces a vote of no confidence if certain changes are not stopped, or even more adamant, be rolled back to some degree.

It is this combined view that France is now seen as ‘Vive La what?’ It is very much on how certain banks and the ECB are called back to stop endangering the future of too many people, Quantative Easing be damned. It is in that environment that the Financial Choice Act is an upcoming danger as Wall Street gets to be in charge of how money flows, in what direction, risky or not. As for what happens between now and 202, I truly hope that I am wrong on every count, because the 2008 global losses which have been estimated to set around $15 Trillion could easily be doubled this time around. More important, as global national reserves are none existent, the impact will hit the consumers and retirees in ways that they cannot even fathom, it makes the hardship in Greece look like a cakewalk as I see it. I will happily be wrong, yet the visibility we already see at present sets me more likely than not correct, which is really scary, not just for me.

Oh and if you doubt me in this (which will remain forever valid), why have we seen massive levels of misinformation from papers with ‘NO ONE wants to risk GREXIT’ Economist says Greece bailout will go ahead to SAVE Eurozone’ (source: The Express), whilst we know that you cannot be set out of the Euro or Eurozone involuntary, and ‘saving Eurozone’ is a little strong is it not? Or the Daily Mail that gives us that Brexit is a gift to the Greeks. This is not merely a point of view, certain sources are adamant to misdirect the focus of the people, if the Euro was such a gift from the gods, misdirection would not have been needed, would it?

 

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What inspiration was there?

There are several things going on. We have Brexit, Frexit, issues with government, bankruptcy of America and there are the tensions. Racial in America, religious in Europe and even in Canada, a nation where the scariest thing is switching off the lights now has a level of tension that Canadians have not seen in many decades. Yet, this is not a light article, this story will turn darker than black soon enough.

Yet, all is not lost, you see, one man’s disaster is another man’s fortune. An issue I actually just stumbled upon. The article that started it is not the one I’ll start with. Let’s start with: ‘Exodus of 10,000 millionaires amid rising Muslim tensions‘ (at http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/france-sees-millionaire-exodus-religious-tensions-rise-1552423), which is all about France. This article actually gives us a little more than some bargained for. The quote “The report was compiled by New World Wealth, an agency that gives information on the global wealth sector. The report was based on data collected from investor visa programme statistics of each country“, you see, that in itself sounds nice, but the super wealthy will have houses on Nassau, Manhattan, possibly London and South America or Australia. You see, these people can travel all over the place, their passports usually do not require visa’s as they go about their spending spree, meaning that they re-locate every 3-4 months, never entering anyone’s field of vision and the authorities will not care as they come to spend. It is the second part that does have an impact “annual interviews with around 800 global high net worth individuals and with intermediaries like migration experts, second citizenship platforms, wealth managers and property agents; data from property registers and property sales statistics in each country; and by tracking millionaire movements in the media“. I personally think that this goes a little further than that. Consider the following news: “Millionaires are leaving Chicago more than any other city in the United States on a net basis, according to a new report“, which is the news we got from the Chicago Tribune. That news is a little more over a week old, but the overall image is forming. The US cannot correct its infrastructure, the people are no longer safe in their homes and racial tension does the rest. These people will have options (as reported) in Seattle and San Francisco. I reckon when places like Minneapolis clean up its crime part, places like that, as well as Lancaster Pennsylvania will get additional attention, these are places with traditional grounding, meaning that older traditional values still bring strength to the table for now. For now is a massive element, but that changes as more and more imbalance sets in. All this because there was not clear correction after the Global Financial Crises in 2008. An issue fuelling Brexit, which only gives the US more to worry about when their currency takes a dive. So will the image of American mansions move to the image of mansions in South Africa, where a wealthy person has a high fence and armed security guard patrols?

Perhaps, but have no fear Vivos is on the case. You see at http://terravivos.com/ where you can tour the largest underground shelter. Is this mere scaremongering? I am not certain, let’s face it, when the dollar does collapse, it will be a dangerous day to be wealthy in America, this is the escalation that was always a risk and has grown into a real clear and present danger. These racial tensions are now getting labelled ‘the Trump effect’, yet is that actually valid? I am not certain, as poverty becomes a stronger issue, the issues between the Democrats and the Republicans will explode, yet overall that makes neither side evil or wrong. Yet, the followers on those two sides make that a realistic cause and effect escalation. As mentioned earlier, we see the rich moving away, but where to?

Other states were mentioned in articles, some will go abroad, yet no matter which of the two happen and state finances will take an additional dive. No matter how their taxation goes, these people spend a decent amount of money on a weekly basis, which now means that millions per week in retail is lost. It seems like a little thing, which it is on a spreadsheet, but in all that the middle class will get hit slightly harder and they have no means to just pick up and leave. They get to live through another downgrade of infrastructure and soon thereafter their funds start diminishing as the overall retirement focus gets lost to factors that do not matter.

So Vivos has a solution. Well, it uses (bought) some of the cold war executive storage facilities and have turned them into solid 5-star survival bunker. A little bit like the Fallout games. There is only one small difference. When these shelters are used, there is little chance that this will be because of nuclear needs. There will be no radiation shielding you from extremist ramifications. The intro movie on their site shows the very first Achilles heel (and that is not the only one). You see, the intro shows the entrance and the long way down to the entrance door. This means that the alternative is not getting in, it is just to dump one cement truck load of concrete down that hole. The cement once dried will make it impossible to open those steel doors (after you weld a bar in front of the entry door), you walk away and within 2 years 80 billionaires will be without food, water and an entrance. So after 15 months a few trillions will have been freed up. This is relatively easy as you only need to find one engineer who worked on it to find out where it was. A system this big will have been talked about, engineers talking to their little boys and girls on how daddy made a safe place for the President, so the location will no longer be a secret!

Yes, they can take loads of precautions, but in the end, it cannot be done from within the entrance and soon after everything that is not on the inside will move from asset to liability. How long do you think these people inside the bunkers have when that point arrives?

The issue remains, what we saw as fun fiction in the 2013 movie Elysium is a lot less far-fetched than one might believe. Even as we know that several sides are pure fiction, the idea of a space station for the super wealthy is technically possible. We have the technology to get it made, they have the cash to build it for real. Real Estate at a billion dollars plus, where the only issue is the oxygen, but that is a mere shuttle away. Yet to get the required number of billionaires out there to agree to this, is perhaps not yet possible. So what is left, a giant cruise ship? A place that never goes to any harbour? Here we have the increasing need of fuel and energy, which a space station would not have as solar panels would be active 24:7. So is a bunker as portrayed in the game series Fallout a reality? That is indeed the question, as stated, it might sound nice in case of pandemics and disasters, but the population is not a disaster (actually it is), those people can solve things, being in a fort is one thing, but when the outside walls are riddled with hostiles, it will only take one clever hostile to drill a hole and fill it with water or concrete. Vivos already has the pricing up for Indiana. $35K at a one-time price. Yet, what happens when the year is up? How to get food and how to get the other resources? Indiana has 80 places, Europa one in addition of 500. So what happens when they become an actual reality? Yet in all this, there is another side where Vivos might be regarded as a failure. The quote “built to provide a minimum of one year of autonomous underground survival before needing to return to the surface after the worst is over” gives them one year, but these social tensions will not be solved within a year. So what will happen when Europa one hits zero resources? They also offer bunkers for on your own property. A place like in those 50’s shelters on your own turf. Yet in all this Vivos is actually sitting on an additional product, you see, when we consider the shortage of housing, the need for something portable and something lasting. Apply this to something slightly more mundane like a 20 feet container and you have the beginning of a solution to get housing to refugee centres. I personally believe that the IKEA Solar-Powered Flat Pack Shelters for Easily Deployable Emergency Housing (at http://inhabitat.com/ikeas-solar-powered-flat-pack-refugee-shelters-offer-easily-deployable-emergency-housing/ikea-refugee-shelter2/) is easily set and shipped, yet they need construction. That is where issues could exist. Yet, if containers become part of the additional framework. Giving structural support on the sides making these houses even sturdier, than this is a solution that should be investigated. You see, the other solution is way too dark and it is one that many seem to be negative towards.

This goes beyond the mere need for refugees. When we consider the 7.3 earthquake that just hit the Kumamoto region implies the need for housing as a 7.3 quake tends to leave loads of people homeless as houses collapse. The Vivos solution is actually a lot sturdier in earthquake terrain as the aftershocks tend to lay waste to the IKEA solution, which makes perfect sense, IKEA brought an emergency solution, not a solution that survives emergency devastation.

In all this another side is illuminated. This is seen when we consider the news of January 26th 2016, when we got the news “The rarest of the black rhino subspecies, the West African Black Rhinoceros, is now recognized by the ICUN as extinct“, mainly due to poaching. So it is time to go into that darker than black place.

Do we deserve to survive?

Do we, rich or poor, healthy or not deserve to survive, this is the question that is on the minds of a fair amount of people. As more and more species become extinct, we need to consider the one part most people are unwilling to do. What happens when we make our own kind close to extinct? What is we get rid of 93%? Leaving us with a mere 500 million people over the entire planet? This gives the planet time to heal. The extinct species might not come back, but consider that it took 120 years to get from 1-2 billion, after that the growth got greater fast, growing a billion in mere decades instead of centuries. We need to get back to those times. There are additional benefits. There will be no job shortage, houses will be cheap as dirt. A life where there is no need for massive oil reserves, no need for Wal-Mart or other mass markets. A mere market for what we actually need. A massive reset of the planet. The question becomes, when we dwindle the population as the super-rich are in a bunker? Would that be an act of Genocide?

Genocide is defined as ‘the intentional action to systematically eliminate a cultural, ethnic, linguistic, national, racial or religious group‘, the UN adopted on December 9th 1948 the General Assembly Resolution 260 through the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (CPPCG). This act is the crowning achievement by Raphael Lemkin, a lawyer of Polonized-Jewish descent.

Interesting is the definitions we see in articles 2 and 3 (at http://www.hrweb.org/legal/genocide.html). Here we see ‘acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such‘:

  • Killing members of the group;
  • Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
  • Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
  • Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
  • Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

This is the ‘interesting’ side in all this, the poor or the ‘abundantly present’ are not set definitions. So the question becomes, are we as ‘users’ of the planet not equally responsible for the continuation of the planet? What happens to that law when you have no set group, what happens when the goal is just to cull the population, what makes it genocide? If it is not that, how many ‘greens’ are willing to sit their life for murder when their hearts tell them that this act they undertook, saved the surviving animal species of this planet and the long list of extinctions end overnight?

By the way, if you think that my ideas are extreme, than realise that I was not the first to voice them. Dr. Eric R. Pianka voiced them in 2006. He got reported by William A. Dembski who informed the Department of Homeland Security that Pianka’s speech may have been intended to foment bioterrorism. Leave it to a person with degrees in Mathematics and Theology and mislabel a mathematical uncertainty as ‘bioterrorism’. In the end, Dembski is right, if we are to save the planet, bioterrorism might be all that is left as a methodology to achieve it. Chemical and nuclear leave too deep a mark on the planet and the life forms around us. Bio toxins have the danger of leaving a mark, yet when they are only affecting people, it becomes ‘less of an issue‘, especially when we leave 500 million alive, most of them farmers by the way. Soon thereafter the Tiger and Orang-utan will get their homes back. What Rhino’s remain can grow their numbers and the fish will reconquer the oceans. Whether it becomes a disease like Ebola as presented by Dr. Pianka or like in the TV Series Helix where 99% of the people are made infertile, we have however surpassed the time to sit back and relax, so it is not impossible that I see the actions required to achieve all this before I pass away.

If you do not believe me than ask the West African Black Rhinoceros, oh no, you can’t we made that one extinct already. So how much else is needed before we realise that out time has a diminished timeline? I once came to the calculations that we have little more than 7 generations left. 7 generations until we have destroyed our planet to the degree that it will no longer support viable eco system. The fact that Pianka made his presentation in 2006, gives weight that we are further down the rabbit hole than we predicted and that my calculation was optimistic. The interconnection of species has been ignored by those in mere pursuit of greed, the overall need for wealth that has taken a lush planet and decimated it in less than 200 years. What will we do yet? The Vivo presentation could be the idea of an entrepreneur marketing to conspiracy theorists with deep pockets, or are they banking on the need for extreme actions?

No matter what happens next, just consider that should the European Medicines Agency decide to tweak their ‘Test procedures and acceptance criteria for biological products‘ (at http://www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/Scientific_guideline/2009/09/WC500002824.pdf), whatever Vivo had open for sale could be sold at 6000% a mere 10 seconds later. By the way, one final thought in the process of infertility as produced by Ronald D. Moore (TV Series Helix), in light of that document on acceptance criteria. What would be regarded as a purity, an impurity or a contaminant?

 

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