Coping: With My “Designated Smart Guys”

imageThis about the easiest Monday morning column I’ve ever written.

That’s because of two phone calls Sunday from my list of “designated smart guys.”

Everyone has them, or should.  They’re the people who work in an industry, have a specialized practices, or some skill or exceptional expertise that sets them apart from run-of-the-mill people who don’t think, don’t store intellectual capital, and who couldn’t connect two dots to form a line to save their souls.

The world is full of “average” people, for a reason: Laziness.

It’s simple enough to cure, fortunately:  All you need is a design template:  If you want to be like smart, successful people, all you need to do is spend your time talking and learning from (care to guess?) smart and successful people..

I like to share the thoughts of my “Designated Smart Guys” (Ure’s Brain Trust) because they are extremely smart people and when they nod in a particular direction, you’re best advised to look where directed, because something BIG is likely coming from off yonder thataway.

The first call was from my friend Howard Hill, who recently published the definitive book on how the Housing Bubble collapses.  The book hasn’t sold particularly well, but that’s because it was late to market.

In the world of high finance opinions are made quickly, but unfortunately, it can be argued that books prior to Howard’s missed key aspects of the crisis.  They simply got it wrong.  Howard’s book, on the other hand, really takes things apart, gets it right, and extracts a lesson which is useful to UrbanSurvival/Peoplenomics readers who invest in the longer-term  and don’t so much care about scalping a dime today and a nickel tomorrow.

Howard doesn’t write enough, but when he gets into a serious writing mood (three very excellent posts in one weekend) I feel compelled to share Howard’s work with you as incredibly useful in developing your understanding of high finance.

So part one of this morning’s column is to read the following (in this order):

Are We There Yet?

The Next Big One Might Already Be Warming Up

Three Conditions and Three Warning Signs

How to Tell if the Next Financial Crisis is Upon Us.

It’s a Wonderful Business

Bailey Bros Building and Loan

The last one will particularly appeal to people who enjoy Jimmy Stewart’s role in the Christmas Season classic – it’s a reminder of just how deeply ingrained our canonization of the financial industry is. 

Oh, and it also is yet-another reason to believe that “The Movie is the Message” as our Gulfstream-crowd sources have mentioned on many occasions. 

When one of the inventors of Financial Engineering as a craft calls, I listen.

But that wasn’t the only call to pass on from Sunday.

The second call was from a very knowledgeable smart guy in a different field: Military affairs. 

While we can’t reveal his former rank or other personally identifiable information, what I can tell you is when a former US Defense Attaché calls, I pay strict attention..

In particular, as we are watching The Global Caliphate get rolled out, watch Constantinople closely and check the Wiki entry for Ottoman Empire.  The hint of future from that exchange was simple:  Watch the Turks

During the 16th and 17th centuries, in particular at the height of its power under the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent, the Ottoman Empire was a powerful multinational, multilingual empire controlling much of Southeast Europe, Western Asia, the Caucasus, North Africa, and the Horn of Africa.[11] At the beginning of the 17th century the empire contained 32 provinces and numerous vassal states. Some of these were later absorbed into the empire, while others were granted various types of autonomy during the course of centuries.[dn 4]

With Constantinople as its capital and control of lands around the Mediterranean basin, the Ottoman Empire was at the center of interactions between the Eastern and Western worlds for six centuries.

The advice from our source is simple:  Notice that religion in Turkey is 67% Sunni and that their most recent leader has been turning from his predecessor’s Western-leanings back to a more traditional Sunni social structure.  Which, in case it’s too early to connect the dots, makes Turkey a key ISIS player, even while they may put on some NATO duds now and then.

Turkey has “run” the ‘Stans before, all the way to Mongolia, so while we watch the birthing of the Global Caliphate, I expect relations to warm between the Saudis and the Turks and for ISIS to continue gathering resources in that part of the world.

Also, you may find one other part of the conversation interesting:  Why Russia may be expected to double-down on any Ukraine bets. 

It comes down to two things:  Most Russian military hardware depends, at least in some measure, on parts made in Ukraine.  The other key point is that Ukraine is Russia’s breadbasket, not to mention the Crimea being their only warm water port.

The EU desperately needs another financial date rape (ask Cyprus, Greece, and others about how much fun this is), but Russia is not about to be bullied by cookie-pushers into a Western rollover.  Not without bigger trouble than we can afford. 

2017?  We should be in the depths of the economic collapse, and that will speed up Armageddon since many of China’s five-year plans for 2020 are working well ahead of schedule.

Not later than 2020, seems our front row seats at World Collapse will be ready for prime time and if you haven’t resettled well away from a major city by then, please take a few moments of which country invented firestorm attacks on civilian populations. 

Two hints:  Dresden and Hamburg.

Along with Nagasaki and Hiroshima, these kinds of highly successful attacks on civilian populations set the USA up for a 70-year run as a global superpower.

Surely, you and I can’t be the only ones who have noticed?

Around the Ranch:  Leaf Me Alone

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It you ever wondered about living out in the woods, there is one tiny detail that is NOT it any sales brochure.

It’s the matter of how many leaves come off the hardwood trees around here in the wintertime.

Sunday I finished up hours and hours of leaf blowing because if we don’t blow the leaves off, what passes (barely) for a lawn gets covered with so many leaves that sunlight doesn’t reach the plants and then the grass dies….all of it.

So the leaves get blown into huge rows maybe 3-feet high and 20 feet long and then get tractored into composting area.

If you haven’t got your leaves off, it’s one of those must-do now chores, otherwise, patches will be there in the spring.

While lawns are a terribly over-rated endeavor, they do tend to keep wildlife (snakes and such) away from the house as well as animals (like ticks).  So we play the game, but with as much power equipment as can be afforded.

In keeping with our previous note, part of living in a superpower is being able to have every power tool on earth available…something which is a blessing and a curse.  But to tackle the job without a tractor and assort of leaf blowers? Not on 29-acres, thanks.

Write when you break-even

George   george@ure.net

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