Economics · Modern Times

Grenfell Tower.

Well, it’s been all over the news. The inferno that engulfed a tower block was on the front pages from Bild Zeitung to The Times Of India. I’ve read several interesting posts regarding this incident and one brought me a snippet of news that really made me realize what a parlous state the British economy is in today.

Bill40 spoke of how the costs saved on the renovation job was £5,000. And he put this in bold numbers because the sum was so tiny. I know five grand is a lot to many people, but in terms of building, it’s the equivalent of one euro cent. That is to say, you can’t buy anything with that kind of money.

Not in building renovation, at least. The scaffolding for that job would have cost in excess of £30,000. Five grand is peanuts.

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Economics · The Comfort Zone

Reverse Engineering 80/20.

Otherwise Known As The Pareto Principle.

When I was still active on Linkedin, I quickly learned not to use the term ‘80/20’ because too many people dismissed the thought simply because of the term. I’d always approach the problem from the direction of the issue at hand – which, since I was a marketer in those days, usually involved business communications of one form or another. And business communication means making money; a business isn’t there to lose money – and there are all too many who, in the words of Perry Marshall, “you’re taping a $20 bill to every parcel you send out.” We’ll return to that later.

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Economics · Modern Times

The Proletariat And Its Woes.

In Rudolf Steiner’s lecture series ‘World Economy’ he speaks of those people who have no particular skill to offer the world. We live in a time when the manner in which humanity has evolved raises challenges to itself, and does so on account of widening perceptions. In and of itself, this brings people into situations that would never have been possible in the mediaeval cultures. This was a time when humans made everything they needed: and if you wanted a purple edging for your toga, you had to spend a substantial amount of money to obtain it. The edging might cost three to five times what the rest of the garment cost.

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Economics · Modern Times

What A Mistake To Make!

In well heeled suburbs, there will be a Merc parked in every driveway
A Merc 500.
I can see by the clean styling that the Mammut’s had his hands on it.

There is something about a German car that the Americans love. The Americans love Japanese cars too, but somehow the larger Japanese cars simply don’t have the panache of a Mercedes Benz 500 series sedan. In well heeled suburbs, there will be a Merc parked in every driveway with the only difference being the colour of the individual status symbol.

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Economics · Modern Times

The Debt Game.

Greece is back in the news, and the half truths along with it. Greece will be “negotiating with its creditors as quickly as possible to avoid another crisis
Seen on allotment gardens in Germany. They’re proud enough to fly their nation’s flags; they’re happy enough to garden together.
Greeks in Germany will produce roughly the same GDP as Greece will itself.
But they have to pay their taxes in Germany!!!

Greece is back in the news, and the half truths along with it. Greece will be “negotiating with its creditors as quickly as possible to avoid another crisis rocking the eurozone” [Daily Telegraph, “EU urges Greeks and creditors to hammer out a deal quickly”]. It has to be remembered here that such crises start on Wall Street and in London where derivatives are traded as though they were the commodity they were tracking. But this is the weird dystopian world of modern finance where illusory numbers on paper are as real than the product they represent.

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Economics · Modern Times

Shrink Wrapped Chicken.

The Difference Between Chicken In London And Budapest.

Commodities are sold by the kilo for a known price. Everything else has been pared away.
Shrink wrapped items on the supermarket shelf. The price is dependent on nothing more than its weight. . Everything else has been sliced off. It’s the ultimate expression of knowing the price of everything and the value of nothing.

It was a long time ago, when a friend from uni was a little boy and was sent to stay with his grandparents in Hungary. This would be in the sixties, when the eastern part of the capital, Budapest, was still semi-rural. Laszlo – Les to his friends who couldn’t pronounce his name – wondered what the brown fluffy birds were that ran about the streets. He was told that they were chickens. Baffled at this, he asked why they didn’t have plastic wrappers.

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A Sideways View · Economics

A Sideways View Of A Bomb.

What Is A Bomb?

701p-a-sideways-view-exposive_acme_bomb_prop_0A bomb is something that explodes, and has one clear objective: destruction of those who disagree with you. As such, it has no positive virtues. Destruction is not something that is positive in human society; in all cases where destruction exists in our lives, it exists as a challenge to us to first understand it and then transform it into something that is genuinely positive. Useful.

In this respect, the bomb represents the total failure of human compassion. There are those who say that war is merely an extention of diplomacy. The reality is that war is where diplomacy has failed. Humans are at their best communicative and understanding, bombs destroy the weak and the strong alike, irrespective of whether they are diplomats, butchers or babies. The human mind is able to discern such things, adjust itself in order to speak at the level of each person we meet that we might be better understood. A bomb does none of this.

It just blows your head off.

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