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現代的美國暴君:Trump April 6, 2018

Posted by hslu in China, Cooking, 特朗普, 美國, Euro, Global Affair, Trump, U.S. Foreign Policy, 川普, 民主.
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我們在離 Amsterdam 中央車站不遠的 Cafe In de Waag 外面的座位吃下午飯。我叫了一杯白酒,太太叫了一小杯荷蘭生啤酒,配 cheese 和意大利橄欖。簡單,方便,好吃,也不貴。過往的行人和廣場的遊客,看我們吃飯,我們也看他們來來往往。雖然太陽照在臉上,冷風吹起在脖子上還是蠻冷的。

餐館裏面有 300 個蠟燭,照亮著餐館的大廳。雖然很特別,可是天天點蠟燭還是很費功夫的。

我們的中飯。

配啤酒和白酒。

當我一面跟太太一起享受午飯,一面滑手機時,我看到這篇有關 Kelly 被 Trump 打入冷宮的新聞。當時我的第一反應就是:這驗證了 Trump 獨斷獨行,反復無常,不聽忠言,自以為是的個性和他過去十五個月朝三暮四,昨是今非的執政記錄。

此外, 我免不了把 Trump 和中國歷史上失敗的暴君和無能的昏君連在一起。

我一面吃 cheese,一面喝酒,卻忍不住的想要說幾句話:

Source:Flipboard

中國早就有‘’良藥苦口利於病,忠言逆耳利於行‘’的說法。這句話的意思就是說:藥雖然苦,卻是治好病的必須品。對一個人有利的話經常是不中聽的。可是它對做事,做人有利,有幫助‘’。

Trump 剛愎自用,刻薄寡恩,自己除了買賣了幾間公寓,破產好幾次以外,並沒有什麼治國,安民,外交和經濟的能耐。可是,他恬不知恥,拼命的以為自己了不起,根本聽不下其他專家利國,利民的忠言。

Trump 心眼小,記恨,心胸狹窄,不聽他人的勸告。他一而再,再而三的把那些跟他意見不合,說話難聽的人都心狠手辣的炒魷魚了。剩下來圍著他打轉的都是他的親戚和寵臣和一些只會順著他意,進讒言,逢迎附會的小人。

Trump 每天的大事就是看電視,看他的手下做了什麼壞事,被媒體指責,那些人說他的壞話,那些人批評他的政策,那些國家對美國的政策做了什麽反應。看完電視以後就按照他個人的喜怒哀樂來決定當天做什麽事。

雖然這種治國的行為還不到不理國事的地步,可是,我可以說:Trump 的政策很多都是沒有經過精密的思考和完整的辯論以後就付諸實行的。

這下可好,Trump 邊上沒有識得大體的有識之士 (美國媒體戲稱這種人 adults),他更能夠不顧後果的一意孤行了。這對美國的前途和它在世界上的地位有不可彌補的打擊。這也是眾叛親離的開始,也是國之將亡的開始。

他用人不當,政策偏激,使得美國的社會矛盾尖銳化,世界各國領袖也避之唯恐不及。日積月累,美國就會被邊緣化了。

The World should hold America accountable September 3, 2015

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Congress, Debt and deficit, Economics, Euro, Global Affair, Politics.
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Jack Lew talked about holding China accountable for renminbi during a CNBC interview with Steve Liesman. He should first talk to Japan’s Abe about Japanese yen because yen has depreciated more than 50% from its high just a few years ago.

What a hypocrite.

Source: CNBC

Source: CNBC

I say that the world should hold America government, Federal Reserve, U.S. Congress, U.S. Treasury Department, American rating agencies and Wall Street too-big-to-fail banks accountable for the mess they have created after the implosion of the sub-prime mortgage crisis.

The damages to the world were too numerous to mention: Great recession; Euro crisis; PIGSS bailout; QEs; mounting national debts and millions upon millions of people losing their jobs all over the world.

Did America pay for this financial crimes? No.

Did any American Congressman or Senator pay for this financial crime they helped created via Fannie and Freddie? No.

Did any of the big banks CEOs pay for this financial crimes? No.

Did any of the American agencies pay for this financial crime? No.

Did any person in American government pay for this financial crime? No.

Jack Lew, hold your government and your Wall Street buddies accountable for this financial crime first before talking about holding other country accountable.

The world order created by America will soon disappear under the feet of the United States. It is not if but when.

Here is what I have to say to Jack Lew: 財大氣粗。

Uber: 50,000 new jobs in Europe January 19, 2015

Posted by hslu in Economics, Euro, jobs, Social Issues.
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That’s what Uber CEO promised if European governments will work with them.

Yeah, these new quasi taxi drivers will make probably £50,000 a year after gas and expenses, not enough to feed a family, but will take billions away from current taxi drivers this year alone.

Uber will make taxi drivers poorer but it will make Uber officials rich.

This is capitalism at its worst.

NATO, US, Russia and China September 2, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Economics, Energy, Euro, Global Affair, Islam, Middle East, misc, Obama, Oil, Putin.
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The US is pulling strings to dictate what NATO needs to do in order to restrict Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.

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Source: WSJ.

NATO is essentially the US because US accounts for the majority of the funding, provides the bulk of the military assets and is a puppy of the Pentagon. It pretty much does what US tells it to do. Germany, U.K. and France are what we call ‘昨日黃花’ because they don’t have money or the will to fight a war they deem not essential for their national interests. They have no desire to lead a fight against Putin’s Russia because it was not their fight. All other NATO members are what we call ‘跑龍套的’ because all they can do is act like cheerleaders on the sideline because they don’t have anything to offer. That leaves US with ‘The US.’

NATO is a case of ‘一個願打 一個願挨’ 兩邊 ‘一拍即合’ 是也。

America started the Cold War against Russia and America ended the Cold War which was a great achievement. The US enjoyed peace dividend and for a while didn’t know what to do with all the extra money that came with the defeat of the Soviet Union.

Over the next 10 some years, America forgot about Russia because Berlin Wall came down, Soviet Union was torn apart, Russia entered into bankruptcy, America reached to the pinacle of the world and the new world order was functioning just like what American strategists have envisioned. Russia was like a sick tiger with no influence what so ever in the world.

The American empire was finally in place and by this time the United States dominated almost every corner of the world. America created many colonies and it did it with American dollar along with the most powerful military in the world.

Then came 9/11. With that, what took America half a century to put together came down like a house of cards.

America became a hostage of Bin Laden. America then spent trillions to beef up its security by fighting two wars and monitoring almost everything  within its borders. Thetremendous costs acted like a national tax on itself. The Fed then reduced interest rates which planted the seeds to the financial crisis. It then reallyrr bought America to its knees. Most western nations, many of them NATO members, kowtowed with the US and they helplessly saw their national debts went through the roof.

Oil prices went through the roof which benefited Muslim nations and none other than Russia: the old tiger who were licking its wounds.

Which bought everyone; including NATO, to 2014, Crimea, Donetsk, Luhansk and now Mariupol.

Ukraine war is a sideshow. Putin is fighting a war he will not lose. Eventually he’ll get Donbass and a pathway to Crimea. Then he’ll stop. And what America is doing to counter Putin’s aggression: economic sanctions and travel restrictions. Yeah!  Putin is shivering in Kremlin.

Obama also managed to piss off China by rounding up China’s neighbors in order to put a NATO equvalent around China. He called that ‘pivot to the East’ in the name of protecting America’s national interests.

Over the same time period, America’s war on terror killed thousands of innocent Muslims and reealy amplified the resentment and hatred against the US. As a result, America is fighting a prolonged guerrilla warfare with many muslims groups and whether America  likes it or not, the war in voming to the America.

Obama’s incomptency, his misguided Middle East policy, his animosity against Israel and his deliberated retreated from the world stage completely back fired. Now, America is fighting three wars at the same time. And where was NATO? NATO was still daydreaming; dreamed what Chinese call ‘黃粱一夢,’  and by the time NATO got their act together, Putin already gets what He wants from Ukraine.

America is fighting a Cold war with Russia. It Probably will last another 40 years.

America is fighting a guerrilla warfare with muslim terrorists. This war may last another 100 years.

And what China is doing now? China is building high speed railroads everywhere they need one. China is building Air Craft Carriers until they think they have enough. China is developing fighter jets and commercial airlines to satisfies their own demands and expands into world market. China is making deals on pipelines and terminals with countries rich in natural resources. China is exploring space to advance its technology. China is strengthening its financial system and currency which one day will bring down the US dollars. China is getting rid of corruptions which has reached to the highest level of the local and central government.

And what the American empire is doing? America is making bombs, bullets, missiles and blackhawk helicopters.

Oh, the once mighty America the empire is borrowing money to get by day in and day out. It has been busy piling on debt after debt to as far as eye can see into the future.

Happy time isn’t far away, CNBC keeps telling US, because stocks are at all time high and the sky is the limit. Trust me, Yellen told us that too.

Hmmm…., what was that I heard on the news that another mortgage crisis is coming this winter?

Don’t Look at me! I didn’t say that. Bove did. He said it on CNBC’s today: 09-02-2014.

What does Chinese have to say about this? ‘鷸蚌相爭 漁翁得利也.’

Hmmm.., before I forget, Soro has a billion+ dollar short on the S&P 500. Thought you might want to know.

Hmmm…, how do I get you back to NATO? Last I heard they were debating sanctions against Russia again.

I have a suggestion and it is a grwat one:

Why don’t they get it over with by putting a real tough sanction against Putin himself. He has billions somewhere, doesn’t he? Freeze his assets. Don’t Let him in the US, German, UK and France. Add Italy and Spain while NATO is working so hard now.

That for sure will get Putin’s attention.

Recession once every 4 to 7 years. Why? July 7, 2014

Posted by hslu in Economics, Euro, Global Affair.
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Yeah, since 1947.

Why?

Is it the Fed? Is it the too big to fail and too big to jail financial institution? Is it the war?

Can the recession or if you will boom and bust cycle be avoided?

May be it is the inherent natural of the capitalism and us human beings: greed and fear.

May be it is the government regulators, including the Fed, who are by default incompetent, lazy, unaccountable and always failed to do their jobs.

May be it is the politicians who failed to make laws before the shit hits the fan so to speak.

The truth of the matter is sadly for our common people a combination of all the above.

If it is and I think it is, the capitalism system is seriously flawed and the history will for sure repeat itself again.

Last recession was in 2009 which means another one will come in a couple of years. Since the Great Recession was so severe, it may take a couple of years more to get rid of the leverage out of the system. But, come it will. Inflation has already started in the US.

The tide has turned against US $ July 7, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Economics, Energy, Euro, Global Affair, Health Insurance, Islam, Obama, Oil, Politics.
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The US dollar will lose its reserve currency status sooner than many people have expected. Mark my words. The downfall of the US has just been accelerated a bit.

Some ananlysts have suggested 10 to 15 years. A few said 20. In all likelihood it will be sooner now because the world has more or less united against America the bully since the start of  financial crisis of 2008.

China fired the first shot with bilateral trade agreements with many countries and these trades will be settled in renminbi instead of US dollar. The latest was Gazprom’s 30 year, $40 billion gas deal with China which will be settled in renminbi. Not USD.

Today, France has joined the party because it is tired of being jerked around by America also. I guess the Frenchmen have just about had it up to their eyebrows with the $9 billion fine American regulator placed on BNP Paribas.

France call it ‘re-balancing.’ I call it ‘get rid of the US dollars’ because it will lose more value if you decide to hold on to it.

Consider you forewarned.

image

Source: CNBC mobile site.

image

Source: CNBC mobile site.

Even Total wants to settle its crude oil trades in Euro instead of USD. And what about airplanes made by Airbus? They are now settled in USD even within EU which totally doesn’t make sense.

Well, since France is doing the bidding for the Chinese government, China can sit back and watch the confrontation from the sideline. In the mean time, keep expanding the renminbi agreements with more funds and more countries.

Well, having France in China’s corner isn’t enough yet. If Saudi Arabia decides to use riyal to settle the Kingdom’s crude oil exports, the death of US dollar as world’s reserve currency will be preordained.

Is Saudi happy with the US? Probably not: not when the US abandoned Egypt or after the US allowed Iran keeps its nuclear capabilities. The US isn’t trustworthy. America only looks after its own interest and does what’s good for itself. Just take a look of the recent history of the middle east and you’ll know. Saudi isn’t stupid. They see what every other country see. The day will come.

The plot just got more interesting now.

Credit Suisse plead guilty May 20, 2014

Posted by hslu in Economics, Euro, Global Affair, Taxes.
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The Swiss bank has agreed to pay the US $2 billion for aiding its clients hiding assets from the US regulators and IRS. It was reported that Credit Suisse has 22,000 US clients with ~$10 billion under management.

In the settlement with the government, Credit Suisse didn’t have to give America regulators the names of its clients and the bank was still allowed to do business in the US. No bank officials will be prosecuted either.

IRS should be happy with the outcome because the most IRS can get from these people is probably 20% of the assets in question.

As for the $2 billion fine, Credit Suisse will make it back within a year. It can claim the charges as an expense too. I hink Credit Suisse came out on top even though it has to pay a much bigger fine.

 

What’s Kerry up to? March 9, 2014

Posted by hslu in Euro, Global Affair, Global Warming, Obama, Politics.
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First of all, Kerry isn’t the brightest secretary of state in the world. Amid the Ukraine crisis, he is demanding all US ambassadors to make climate change a priority.

Here is the headline on CNN website:

John Kerry: Climate change as big a threat as terrorism, poverty, WMDs

http://www.cnn.com/2014/02/16/politics/kerry-climate/

Don’t you think that the timing is a bit strange? How come Ukraine isn’t the top priority now?

Here is why:

There are many crises in the world and the once all-mighty United States and the incompetent Obama have no solution to any of them: Ukraine, Russia, Syria, Iran, Egypt, Israel, China, Japan, Afghanistan and Iraq. And don’t forget Obamacare and rising national debt in the US too. In short, Obama doesn’t want Ukraine to be the topic on Sunday’s TV talk shows.

So what do Obama do? Divert people’s attention to something else and ask Kerry for ideas.

voilà

Kerry is going to discuss climate change from now on. No Ukraine. Climate change is bigger than WMD.

What Obama and Kerry really want to say is that Ukraine is not our problem. We really don’t give it a damn who takes what there.

 

 

山中无老虎,猴子称霸王 February 14, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Economics, Energy, Euro, Global Affair, Islam, Muslim, Oil.
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The world is full of unknowns and the world economy is still struggling to overcome the Great Recession caused by America’s sub-prime crisis and liquidity created by Alan Greenspan, the former Federal Reserve Chairman.

American government has provided enormous stimulus to keep a safety net for those who lost their jobs at the expense of trillion dollar deficits and $17 trillion national debt. The Federal Reserve has done everything it could to pop up risky assets hoping for a trickle down wealth effect. It will have unintended consequences. ECB and Royal Bank of England have pumped billions of dollar to support European economies while several European peripheral countries suffered deep and prolonged recessions. Euro has survived its worst crisis less than 20 years since its creation. Japan, in its bid to revive its sagging economic and return the country to its old glory, has embarked on massive QE program the like of which the world has never seen before. China has decided to transform its economy from an investment-led economy to a consumer driven economy. The financial and political impacts will be felt inside and outside of China for decades. Emerging markets have suffered significant decline in 2013 because of tapering by American’s Federal Reserve Bank. The 30 year long bull market has officially ended. The world has entered a new era where rising interest rates will dictate how capital flows in the next twenty or thirty years.

Arab Spring, decline of America’s standing in the world, the rise of China and its transformation, the resurgence of Japan’s far right, the conflict between China and its neighboring countries, the re-emerging of Russia on the world stage, the precarious situation of Israel, the resurgence of Al Qaeda in Lybia, Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and many regions in Africa, Iran’s continuing influence in the Middle East, the new found importance of sub-Sahara Africa and the shale oil revolution happening in the US and other parts of the world have thrust the world into a new era where confrontations may be norm from now. Either by design, financial strains at home or Obama’s lack of ability, America has withdrawn from the leadership role of the world. The vacuum left behind is a prelude to a more chaotic world to come.

 

A Chinese proverb probably describe the condition of the world the best: “山中无老虎,猴子称霸王。”

The world economy has just licked its wound from the Great Recession. The central banks around the world have done as much as they could to repair the banks and financial institutions. Stock markets of major countries around the world are near or at all time highs. Housing market in the US has recovered and American’s wealth has, to a major degree, been restored. Many European countries have become more competitive because they have shed many of their unfavorable social programs.

With favorable economic developments began to take hold, the warning signs are just as prevalent as before with usual suspects stronger than ever notwithstanding the new conflict between Japan and China which could be very explosive on its own. It seems that the world has entered into a very precarious phase. A new world order is taking shape but it is not stable and could be dangerous to the economy and financial markets of the world. The outcome is by no means clear.

Like I said in the beginning, my crystal ball is decidedly murky.

Emerging Markets – Capital Flights may Continue February 14, 2014

Posted by hslu in Economics, Euro, Global Affair.
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It is estimated that as much as $4 trillion has entered the emerging markets since QE began in 2008. The so-called “hot money” has gone into real estates, currency (carry trade,) stock market and local projects in these countries and has seen their investment handsomely rewarded.

Ever since the hint of tapering in Mid May by Bernanke and the fact that tapering has actually begun, these “hot money” has been stepping over each other to get out of these countries. The results are disappointing stock market returns for many of these countries in 2013. Their currencies also suffered significant loss especially those with current account deficit, trade deficit and minimum foreign currency reserves. Hot money also left high inflation behind, e.g., India, because excessive demands over the years.

Government Bonds and income instruments from these countries also suffered because hot money has left these markets due to currency risks. It is unfortunate for these countries but they have little recourse unless they adopt some kind of capital control to keep funds stay inside their borders. About the only thing they could do to intervene in the currency market and to raise short term interest rates. But these type of actions is futile and damage to their economy was done in the process.

Unfortunately, very few of these countries have taken the advantage of the explosive economic growth over the past five years to embark on necessary structural and government reforms. As hot money left the country, these countries have few resources to deal with the aftermath. India and Indonesia are prime examples.

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