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Is a new U.S. – Russian alliance possible? Let’s hope so.

In the last section of my book “Grand Deception”  (currently banned, but available here in kindle, nook, or pdf formats), titled “Toward the New U.S. – Russian Alliance” I wrote that, “Perhaps more than at any point in history, the future of humanity lies in the hearts and minds of the people of the United States and the people of Russia. Do we dare imagine the world we could all build together if we rejected the needless fear and hostility?” Recently the relations between Russia and the West have deteriorated, triggering a new Cold War that could degenerate into a hot one, whose consequences would be too harrowing to contemplate.

In order for us to avoid making a massive mess of things, U.S. leadership must rise above the relentless hostility towards Russia and to engage instead in friendly and constructive cooperation. Today, President Trump’s administration took another important step in this direction by holding a high-level meeting between the Chairman of its Joint Chief of Staff, General Joseph Dunford and his Russian counterpart, General Valery Gerasimov. Continue reading

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Eurasia, History, Politics, Real life, Truth

How Bill Browder “proved” Vladimir Putin’s corruption

Former hedge fund manager Bill Browder, the faux crusader for human rights, has made very serious claims of corruption against Vladimir Putin, claims which many media personalities in the West have treated as true and factual without ever challenging them. Browder, the go-to expert on Putin’s corruption, presents these claims in his bestseller, “Red Notice.” At first blush, they show Vladimir Putin in a very negative light that may shock the reader. A more careful scrutiny of Browder’s case shows it to be a disingenous, baseless smear, which further begs the question: if this is the best (worst) Browder can offer as proof against Putin, what exactly do the ceaseless allegations of his corruption amount to? The following excerpt from my book (currently banned, but available here in electronic format) examines the merits of Bill Borwder’s assertions. Continue reading

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Asset management, Commodity price, Commodity risk, Economics, Inflation, Market trends, Risk management

Labor tightness adds fuel to rising inflation in the U.S. economy

Toward the end of 2012, Elliott Management’s Paul Singer made a speech at the Archstone Partnership annual meeting. He stated that, “The thing that scares me the most is significant inflation, which could destroy our society.” About a year later in an interview with Wall Street Journal’s “Heard on the Street” program he explained that this could come about with small changes in perception of inflation risk: “The first whiffs of either commodity inflation or wage inflation … may cause a self-reinforcing set of market events … which may include a sharp fall in bond prices, … fall in stock prices, rapid increase in commodities…Continue reading

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Psychology, Something completely different

The magical power of “I can’t.”

Words can be very powerful – especially the words we tell ourselves.  I recently made a startling discovery about this.

One of the things I told myself through life was that I couldn’t draw. I can doodle – make geometric shapes on paper, circles, squares, etc… But I couldn’t draw – this I knew about myself.

One day however, I was unable to tell myself this.

That day my son asked me to draw him something. Hmm… I’m his dad. I can’t tell him that his dad can’t draw. I’m supposed to be the strongest, smartest, most capable man in the world. Tellinig him that I couldn’t draw was out of the question. Continue reading

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History, Policy, Politics, Something completely different, Truth

Sandals

In 1893 Mahatma Gandhi went to South Africa, expecting to stay there for just a few months. He ended up staying 21 years as he took up the struggle to restore the dignity and rights to a subdued, disarmed, and enslaved Indian community.

During those years, his chief political opponent was General Ian Christian Smuts who, as the Colonial secretary and later the Secretary of the Interior was responsible for implementing some of the repressive laws against the Indians.

When Gandhi finally left South Africa in 1914, Smuts wrote, “The saint has left our shores, I hope forever.

Years later, an exasperated Winston Churchill asked Smuts – who had meanwhile served two terms as South Africa’s prime minister – why he had not killed Gandhi while he had the chance. Smuts replied, “How could I do this to a man who made sandals for me with his own hands when I imprisoned him.

In later years, remembering Gandhi Smuts wrote: “… I have worn these sandals for so many summers since then, even though I may feel that I am not worthy to stand in the shoes of so great a man.

I posted this story a few years ago in my blog, “The Jubilee.” It was related by Niloufer Bhagwat in her article, “The Political Relevance and Global Impact of Mahatma Gandhi.“ I believe it bears relevant lessons to today’s social and political struggles.

Continue reading

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Asset management, Economics, Inflation, Market research, Market trends, Policy, Stock market

Parabolic markets may signify onset of high inflation

Asset price inflation might signal debasement of the currency and acceleration of commodity price inflation

This time it may well be different… For several years now, numerous high-profile commentators and analysts have been forecasting an imminent stock market correction, or indeed a crash, evoking the events of 1929, 1987, 2000 or 2008. Of course, many are now predicting it is sure to happen in 2018. If not, perhaps in 2019 or maybe 2020? Who knows… But so far, not many analysts – if any, apart from yours truly – have considered the possibility that this rally might extend even higher from today’s dizzying heights. In an October 2016 post I suggested that this is exactly what was ahead. Continue reading

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Central banking, Economics, Eurasia, History, Policy, Politics, Social development

Deflationary gap and the West’s war addiction

In June of 2014, a group of American researchers published an article in the American Journal of Public Health, pointing out that, “Since the end of World War II, there have been 248 armed conflicts in 153 locations around the world. The United States launched 201 overseas military operations between the end of World War II and 2001, and since then, others, including Afghanistan and Iraq.” To be sure, each of these wars was duly explained and justified to the American public and for all those Americans who believe that their government would never deceive them, each war was defensible and fought for a good reason. Nonetheless, the fact that one nation initiated more than 80% of all wars in the last seventy years does require an explanation, which I submit below: Continue reading

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