France

Paul Summerville • April 19, 2016

Edward Burra, from The Snack Bar (1930), Tate Britain.

What I’m listening to. 

Pieces de Clavecin: Suite No. 2: Courante No. 1

No clue.

Financial Times -- Britain’s friends are right to fear Brexit

Despite absurd attempts to deny this, nobody knows what would follow a vote to leave the EU.

Related.

Paul Summerville • February 12, 2016

What I’m listening to.

French Baroque Music

Opps.

Japan Times -- Abenomics on ropes as reform arrow, BOJ ‘bazooka’ misfire

As Tokyo stocks tumbled further Friday, dragging the Nikkei average to its first close below 15,000 since October 2014, economists asked: Is Abenomics out of options?

Paul Summerville • October 12, 2014

Why Tennessee Williams was special, and the price he paid. 

Paul Summerville • October 9, 2014
Paul Summerville • September 17, 2014
Paul Summerville • January 15, 2013

Commentary on the slow death of the two state solution, the perils of the sunk cost, how do you say smog in Mandarian, weak France, the importance of the sacred, and speaking of sacred hockey's new players in Canada.

Where is this going to lead? Thanks to Ken of Tokyo/Hong Kong.

Paul Summerville • January 11, 2013

Commentary on oil in Africa, the end of independent central banks, Mexico’s terrible lost war, how the game of Monopoly helped Allied prisoner of war escapees get home, some thoughts on the global economy in 2013, the French and the Russians, and why Idle No More has legs.

Ghana’s oil future, Norway or Nigeria?

Paul Summerville • December 5, 2012

Commentary on taking the fiscal plunge, Canada’s provincial nominee programme, Beveridge’s shadow, the danger of settling old scores, the French economy buckles, when will history happen, and the strong Canadian dollar's positive impact on the economy.

Go ahead, make my day.

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Twin Virtues: Inequality of Outcomes & Equality of Opportunity©

Twin Virtues

Ultimately, the most successful societies find the balance between the twin virtues of inequality of outcomes and equality of opportunity.

The new politics must marry the twin virtues of unequal outcomes and equality of opportunity.

When too few get too much everybody loses.

Feminism is about women living their lives on their own terms, marshalling the resources of the society to make that possible, and men embracing this as vital to a successful society and their own liberation.

Can it be that striving for equality of opportunity however imperfect the process not only benefits the individual but also creates benefits for the society that are unintended but wonderful?

Economics must be a 'moral enterprise' as much as politics claims to be. Economic outcomes need to be framed in terms of right and wrong not just efficiency if only because these often align in surprising ways that are good for society and the economy.

My vision of Canada is that any Canadian child from a family of limited circumstance can expect to have a chance at lifetime of unlimited opportunities.

Free trade is a wonderful thing. Time and time again economists have proven that free trade creates enormous wealth for each country 'on the whole'. Historians have shown that free trade is usually associated with rising political, social and cultural liberty. The perennial problem is that free trade always creates tremendous disruption for thousands even millions of individuals often concentrated in one geography, and where the state is idle, not investing in best in class instruments of social justice, free trade can be a permanent ticket out of the middle class, down, not up.

Tax policy should be founded on the principle of generating steady tax revenues sufficient to maximise environmentally sustainable economic growth in order to fund fair government.

Public policy should be designed to decrease inequality before the law and increase equality of opportunity.

Capitalism is not the problem; the problem is what we do with capitalism.

Content is always more difficult to argue than conspiracy.

Let the state regulate and the market operate (most things).

Welfare strategies are best designed as a hand up, not as a hand out.

Political debate should not be fact free fighting.

Explanation lasts longer than eloquence.

Always favour empowerment over dependency.

The most enduring public figures are embraced for the causes they fought for and not the concept of themselves they hoped others would remember them by.

Find your voice and don't be the echo of somebody else.

It is possible to operate on two different levels: the practical, cautious and conservative; and the realm of ideas, open, free, and radical.