Smart Links 29 March 2012
Commentary on a genius, Turkey’s moment of truth, breaking the diamond monopoly, the truth about Bank of America, getting to the 22nd century in one piece, European dependency ratios by 2060, inching to depression, and Canada-Japan free trade.
Meet the Mozart of chess Magnus Carlsen. Thanks to Mary of London.
youtube -- Mozart of Chess: Magnus Carlsen
At age 21, chess grandmaster Magnus Carlsen is the number one player in the world and says he loves to see his opponents squirm.
Turkey at a crossroad.
Financial Times -- Erdogan’s Turkey: A rule more ruthless
A decade on, the AKP government’s hold on power is ever more authoritarian.
Breaking De Beers.
The Atlantic -- Have You Ever Tried to Sell a Diamond?
An unruly market may undo the work of a giant cartel and of an inspired, decades-long ad campaign.
Bank of Avarice. Thanks to Nick of Victoria.
Pdf below -- Rolling Stone - Bank of America - Too Crooked to Fail
Human history is full of examples of civilisations consuming themselves into extinction. Can we prevent the a global middle class from doing the same? Thanks to Tony of Victoria.
Embassy -- Global civilization: The options
How do we reach 2100 without civilizational collapse?
The upside down pyramid.
History’s sad tale.
Project Syndicate -- The Shadow of Depression
Four times in the past century, a large chunk of the industrial world has fallen into deep and long depressions characterized by persistent high unemployment: the United States in the 1930’s, industrialized Western Europe in the 1930’s, Western Europe again in the 1980’s, and Japan in the 1990’s. Two of these downturns – Western Europe in the 1980’s and Japan in the 1990’s – cast a long and dark shadow on future economic performance.
Our oil, your cars.
Toronto Star -- Walkom: Japan free trade pact marks victory for hewers-of-wood economy
Two things of note stand out about the latest proposal for a Canada-Japan free trade treaty.
|Rolling Stone - Bank of America - Too Crooked to Fail.pdf||221.53 KB|
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Twin Virtues: Inequality of Outcomes & Equality of Opportunity©
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.