Shooting Yourself in the Foot

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This idiom is often associated with damaging or impeding one’s own plans, progress, actions or best interests through foolish actions or words.  Germany may be exhibit A.  It would seem that a major developed country facing a generational energy crunch would be trying everything possible to expand supply while doing as little environmental damage as … Continued

Sea Power

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The Wall Street Journal recently published a review of a new book by Gregg Easterbrook, “The Blue Age: How the U.S. Navy Created Global Prosperity—And Why We’re in Danger of Losing It”, that highlights the relative peace and tranquility on the seas, courtesy of the U. S. Navy.  The importance of ocean shipping has been … Continued

Competing With China

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Recently, two articles crossed my desk that provide some insight into the extent and complexity of attempting to compete with China. The first article addressed the issue of labor and introduced, at least to me, the number 996.  Apparently, this is shorthand for the schedule that has become the workplace norm at many Chinese companies: … Continued

Coin of the Realm-China Weighs In

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Investing in cryptocurrency has always been controversial.  In that regard, we have previously posted several blogs that suggest that legal tender is what the government says it is.  Recently, China has made it clear that it does not recognize cryptocurrency as legal tender and the banking system does not accept cryptocurrencies or provide relevant services. … Continued

Intellectual Property

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Wikipedia defines intellectual property (IP) as a category of property that includes creations of the human intellect.  There are many types of IP, and some countries recognize more than others.  The most well-known types of IP are copyrights, patents, trademarks and trade secrets.  The main purpose of IP law is to encourage the creation of … Continued

Are China’s Climate Promises Feasible?

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China’s economy is heavily dependent on coal powered electric energy.  We have previously discussed China’s dependence on coal. (See our blogs titled Climate, Coal and China and Coal).  In order to meaningfully reduce China’s dependence on coal, solutions to two primary roadblocks will have to be found.  Specifically, the availability of scalable and economically practical … Continued

Unintended Consequences

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Thanks to Canada and the Jones Act, it now appears almost certain that Alaska’s cruise season will be canceled for a second straight summer. On Thursday, Feb. 4, Canada announced a continuation of prohibitions on cruise vessels operating in Canadian waters until February 2022. Under America’s Jones Act, (Merchant Marine Act of 1920) foreign-flagged ships … Continued

Coin of the Realm – Now India?

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On Feb 16, 2018 and Jul 12, 2019 we posted blogs titled “Coin of the Realm” and “Coin of the Realm – Update” in which we suggested that legal tender is what the government says it is and governments don’t like competition. Government action has always been a risk factor for investors in cryptocurrency.  Recent … Continued

The EU Money Grab

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European governments, that already have some of the world’s highest tax rates, are under increasing pressure to raise additional revenues, and believe that American tech giants represent a potential “gold mine.”  The route to increased revenues seems to be following several paths, including, new taxes designed to increase the EU’s share of U.S. tech company … Continued

Freedom of the Seas Is Important

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Over the last several years we have posted a number of blogs relating to the importance of the “freedom of the seas”, most recently on (17May16) and (25Jan17).  Despite the fact that approximately 80% of the world’s trade volume travels by sea, the international community has largely ignored China’s efforts to exert military control over … Continued

“What Fools These Mortals Be.”

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This is a line spoken by Puck in Shakespeare’s play, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”  Argentina recently announced its ninth sovereign debt default. That Argentina defaulted should not have been a surprise, but that the country had an opportunity to default a ninth time makes one wonder just who lends money to a serial defaulter after … Continued

China Has a Bad Debt Problem

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China has lent billions to poor countries, and now they can’t pay it back.  Perhaps China should have heeded J. Paul Getty’s observation, “If you owe the bank $100 that’s your problem, if you owe the bank $100 million, that’s the bank’s problem.” China’s global lending spree, which, over the last two decades, showered less … Continued