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Monday, 25 September 2017

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In the article, ‘Japanisation’ is an interesting word. At least Japan didn't allow the third world onto their shores. Germany may be able to right herself economically but that will be much harder as the rot of decades of leftism has taken its toll on her culture and institutions. Merkel allowing and even encouraging Muslims and others from the third world to over run Germany will have severe consequences. The natives are angry over this. Justifiably.

No mention of the green energy program, which results in expensive and fluctuating energy- not a good thing in a country that depends on manufacturing.
Nor does it mention reliance on Russia for gas supply.
And the new batch of apprentices Merkel has imported don't look very promising to me

If the Jerries have muffed up, it will at least close the economic and productivity gap between them and the Club Medders. And that will reduce the tensions in the Eurozone.

And without Merkel's will due to her reduced majority, the combined effect is to stall the USE project.

See, if Blighty'd still been in the EU with the pound up 15%, growth at 3.2%, and the deficit reducing, we'd be well placed to get "Perfidious Albion" stuck right in to 'em and knock the USE into the very long grass, or better still, fashion it to a form of our making.

Instead we're bobbing about in the Channel while the Panzers have all conked out before they got to Dunkirk!

Time for a quick pint and poke at Portsmouth, turn the boats around, and get stuck right back in there!

SoD

What thing of value, if anything, under pins the € ?

Germany is under the same pressures from globalization as all other countries. The nationalist AfD probably won't have much of a say when the SPD becomes the new opposition party. AfD's chairwoman Frauke Petry has quit and other divisions are already showing. Germany isn't alone in delaying infrastructure improvements during low interest rates. Because, you know, god forbid the moneyed pay taxes.

Advanced countries use fiat money, which is based on government calculations of national net worth along with some other factors. The US moved to completely fiat money in 1971 when Nixon ended the gold standard.

"Fiat money" is what I was looking for.

The Euro is underpinned by a giant turtle standing on the backs of four giant elephants. Or something.

There's nothing wrong with the principle of fiat money.

So long as what's on the central bank's balance sheet plus the future earnings of taxpayers stands up to the market's judgement of worthiness, a currency has value.

The Jerries are on the hook for the Euro and the Eurozone debt since Draghi made 'em so. Hence the market's ok with the Euro and Eurozone debt.

The pound and UK debt, well that's another matter now HMG is unleashed. If Corbyn gets in it might be over before it even starts. The markets will go mental. Even wet Toryism won't last long. It'll be the UK debt market that'll bring the Brexit dream to its knees, like it did last time.

Remember that guy from the IMF getting off the plane to meet Denis Healey and kick the financial shit out of him and Jim Callaghan - and us? ...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1976_IMF_Crisis
https://www.amazon.co.uk/When-Britain-Went-Bust-Crisis-ebook/dp/B01MQ59BWQ

Back to the future.

SoD

Totally off topic, but just found the sketch that the "very witty Wilde" comment the Gaffer uses from time to time derives from ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxXW6tfl2Y0

Made me snigger on a grim evening in Coventry.

SoD

It's easy to see the military influence here, because y'all seem to be fighting the last war. It's not a sure thing Labour would push the same kind of unionism and social programs of the '70's. Also, if your conservatives keep becoming more like ours they'll learn to love debt.

"You know, Paul, Reagan proved that deficits don't matter." - Dick Cheney to Paul O'Neill (January 9, 2004)

Exactly what effect a German decline will mean for European politics is beyond my remit but I see troubles ahead!

Sudden economic decline, a large internal population of scapegoats, and the rise of the right wing - I think you might hazard a guess!

"Sudden economic decline, a large internal population of scapegoats, and the rise of the right wing - I think you might hazard a guess!"

Oi, I'm the one that talks about Brexit ...

SoD

BOE,

It's turtles all the way down!

Turtles and termites.

Here's my favourite Ogden Nash "pome".

The Termite

Some primal termite knocked on wood.
And tasted it and found it good.
And that is why your cousin May fell
through the parlour floor today.

And now you can thank me!!

Okay. Thank me. :)

Bedtime for you I think Up2L8.
Pick up your cocoa and say goodnight.

Yes Ma'am,

G'nite.

Read and weep ...

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/09/25/labour-has-descended-political-economic-fantasy-land-voters/

Confess thy sins, oh Brexiteers, for twas ye that brought it upon us. Thou wakest the youf, and departeth thine saviour at the same time.

May the Lord have mercy on thine souls. Amen.

SoD

Thank you, Andra, a little drop of Nash first thing in the morning does me good!

SoD,

You're the only one here who will read it, but here's the reply:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/07/austerity-britain-labour-neoliberalism-reagan-thatcher

The only bit of that article that was noteworthy is the commentary about monopolies accumulating in the private sector. I agree these are damaging.

But there's the inconsistency in the article: Why would public sector monopolies fare any better than private ones?

Human nature doesn't change just because a monopoly is public rather than private.

Every time that article says "We should invest here, there, and everywhere", it means "We should make monopolies here, there, and everywhere". And yet a sentence earlier it says "monopolies are bad".

The ancient and current problem with Britain (buried for 40 years, as we know), is public monopoly funding via unions of the labour party, and private monopoly funding via big business owners of the tory party. No Libertarian socialist or Libertarian conservative manifesto can survive that brutal grip on power by private and public monopolies.

And since that double lock on power hasn't and won't change, Britain will revert to type: 1970's type.

SoD

SoD,
I read both links and am wondering if there are ways to amend laws governing private monopolies? The Labor promises sound oh so familiar when they speak of "investing" in people. Something has to give.

No it won't loz, that's bollocks.

SoD,

You missed most of Stiglitz's points, and I suggest you read the piece again. However, the difference between public and private investment, monopolistic or not, is that the public can exert some control over public spending through democratic government. It has no say over the decisions made in board rooms, even for the vast majority of shareholders.

We've seen the effects of leaving too many decisions to industry through privatization: crumbling infrastructure, loss of privacy, unstable economies, historic levels of wealth inequality, social unrest, and so on. The profit motive alone can't serve the common good. Neither can the interests of the hoi polloi. As Stiglitz writes, there needs to be balance. That's what responsible government is all about.

No its not bob that's bollocks. Public spending leads to pverty inequaly and ruin.

Always has.

Cuffleyburgers, give me some examples when public spending didn't work and I'll give you some when it did. I'd probably start with the space program and interstate highways in the US.

"the public can exert some control over public spending through democratic government. It has no say over the decisions made in board rooms, even for the vast majority of shareholders."

Bob, if I'd voted in the exact opposite direction in every election I've ever voted in it wouldn't have made one iota's worth of difference to anything I've ever received in goods or services from the public sector. The private sector monopolies can't be worse than that. They can only be equal or better.

On the other hand, when I take the equivalent buying power to the market, I choose every day, and every choice makes a difference to my life. And every board member exerts themselves to the maximum of their abilities to understand what I want and how to provide it. Because if they don't, they're dead meat.

And when everyone chooses in the market, the whole industry behind the market responds like a neural network , tuning, refining, improving. That just doesn't happen when a monopoly replaces the market, whether public or private.

SoD

"I read both links and am wondering if there are ways to amend laws governing private monopolies"

The trick to deal with monopolies while avoiding the wrongness of state expropriation and nationalization, feckless tax chasing of private monopolies who have better accountants and lawyers, is the "operational and equity split".

Monopolies should be split operationally into smaller chunks. Maybe literally into hundredths. And the smaller chunks will compete again, job done.

And the share holders are given one share in each of the hundredths for each share they had in the whole monopoly. That way there's no expropriation. If I take a £100 note out of your pocket and put 100 £1 coins in your purse, I haven't robbed you; I merely gave you change.

Unable to afford the top accountants and lawyers, the hundredths pay their taxes too.

That model is nigh on impossible to implement while the political parties are funded by monopoly patrons.

Without constitutional change Blighty won't sort any of the problems now reanimated after 40 years, like some zombie movie.

SoD

SoD,

"Bob, if I'd voted in the exact opposite direction in every election I've ever voted in it wouldn't have made one iota's worth of difference to anything I've ever received in goods or services from the public sector."

No one, I hope, believes their personal preferences control the future of the public sector. The person that could do that would be an absolute dictator. The private sector needs supervision by government because of known tendencies to price fix, externalize costs to the detriment of health and public costs, bribe, hide profits offshore or otherwise cook the books, and - do I really have to go on?

The Libertarian myth that our purchases drive the market %100 is absurd on its face. We buy what is offered, and that's often controlled by big interests. Here's one example:

https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/drug-firms-stave-generics-costing-consumers-billions-critics-say-n447916

"We buy what is offered, and that's often controlled by big interests."

That's not a market criticism then, it's a monopoly criticism.

In a competitive market there is no "control by big interests", by definition.

There's an interesting example I deal with everyday of how even a publicly perceived "big monopoly" is trying to mimic competitive market behaviour by capturing customer requirements directly, and that is Microsoft.

MS has a site called "user voice": -

https://office365.uservoice.com/

Here you can ask for new functionality in their online products. Others can upvote your idea, and MS cream off the best and popular and do it. MS comment in the blog- like threads for each request, joking in on the requirement, and eventually if the item is accepted it moves forward to the MS "roadmap", which is their program of forthcoming developments.

https://products.office.com/en-us/business/office-365-roadmap

Most everything I've asked for or upvoted has happened or is now on the Microsoft "roadmap".

Of course the myriads of small and medium businesses in true competition have been doing this since they were formed, you know, perpetually asking their customers what they want.

But it's interesting to note that just being "big" is sometimes no guarantor of monopoly. Amazon, Apple, Google, Oracle, and Microsoft still kick each others arses around the arena, and although only five, they still compete.

But one NHS, one state sector, is never enough. That's hard-wired monopoly, and it'll never directly ask you what you want. You'll only get what you want voting with your feet and choosing the least worst state.

Of course the "controllers" don't like that. Hence why Brexit was so orientated about stopping freedom of movement. It's why I like the EU and the 28. That's 23 more choices than the big 5 techs.

SoD

Well, SoD, your 28, or even 27, choices will not last for long if 'Junck the Drunk' and his Commissariat have their way. The 'choice' will be one way, their way, or the highway!

Now that we're out, you might be right. But then again, after the Jerry election you might be wrong.

With us in, and the Jerry election the way it is, there's no chance Junck-the-Drunk will get any of his recent speech into action in the near future.

SoD

SoD, you're just dicing words. From the beginning both Microsoft and Apple have been appropriating ideas from wherever they could find them. Both their OS's are based on UC Berkeley's BSD. Apple famously copied their GUI from Xerox. Microsoft then copied Apple and countless other utility programs going back at least to Grep. Often the smaller, more innovative companies sued unsuccessfully because Microsoft had an army of lawyers by then. What does any of that have to do with a "free" market? There is no such thing.

Also, I'm not arguing for a centralized state system, only that citizens, through the state, should have the ability to police the activities of business. You feel that your single vote makes no difference. It's also true of your purchases. Customer service is a completely different topic.

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