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Negative Balance of Trade? So What?

Although the topic may appear daunting, the essence of the matter is utterly simple. As a fair approximation, each international transaction, whether it be buying, selling, borrowing, or lending across a national border involves a willing party on each side—importers want to purchase goods from sellers abroad, lenders want to lend to borrowers abroad, and so forth. Each party to the transactions expects to benefit by entering into it. In a sane and just world, that would be the end of the matter. Read the full thing

Political Power-Lust Thrives in a Democracy

Under democracy, politicians are less candid about their motives; they need us to like them, and power-hunger is not likeable. But given its ubiquity throughout most of political history, can we really believe that the motive of power-hunger is no longer paramount? One of my favorite political insiders privately calls politicians of both parties "psychopaths"--and he's on to something. Rising high on the pyramid of power is hard unless the love of power fuels your ascent. Read the full thing

The USA—Best Not to Go There Unless You Have an Urgent Reason to Do So

The USA is simply not a welcoming place. It is a police state, and a hostile one at that. It makes virtually no attempt to distinguish potentially threatening people from ordinary people who, to anyone with a trace of brain, obviously pose no threat to national security or the personal well-being of current U.S. residents. So, be smart, amigos: don’t go there unless your have a very important reason to do so. Read the full thing

Think of All the Jobs Central Heating Destroyed

Central heating – along with running water, electricity-powered household appliances such vacuum cleaners, ranges, refrigerators, and freezers (with the latter later becoming self-defrosting), commercial dairies, inexpensive prepared foods, and other modern conveniences – released women from the dullness of housewifery so that they could contribute their skills to strangers in commercial markets (and, of course, earn extra monetary income from these contributions). Read the full thing