Monday, February 28, 2005

Star Wars

After Martin publicly confirmed that Canada would not take part in the N. American missile defense shield, Paul Cellucci responded by saying:

We will deploy. We will defend North America,he said. We simply cannot understand why Canada would in effect give up its sovereignty, its seat at the table to decide what to do about a missile that might be coming towards Canada. -Globe & Mail

Martin responded with the following:
"But in terms of Canadian airspace, yes we would expect to be consulted. This is our airspace. We're a sovereign nation. And you don't intrude on a sovereign nation's airspace without seeking permission.[..]"We did not give up sovereignty," Martin responded. "We affirmed sovereignty."-CBC

I like the decision as I think it distances us from America, however it does worry me a bit that we will have no leverage in terms of intercepting the missiles, i.e. where they get blown up. Depending on the direction, if it's over Canadian soil going towards the U.S., you can bet that the President will not wait to consult the prime minister, nor would he have time to do so. I don't think this is over yet, let's see how it shakes out.

-Now fuck off and stop dragging us into your bullshit foreign policy problems.

In other news, I'm studying for a spreadsheet analytics course and going stir crazy because of it, why did I decide to do an MBA again? I must sub consciously love having no life, yes, that must be it.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Crumbling of an empire.

Here are three reasons why I think the U.S. empire is close to falling in the near future (2-4 yrs):

Foreign Investment:
Currently the two biggest purchasers of US Treasuries are China and Japan accounting for a little over 20% of total foreign denominated purchases. Both these currencies are pegged against the US dollar, therefore, as simple supply/demand shows, as people pour more money into these treasury instruments, the US dollar rises, but so to, do Japan and China's currency. Being pegged basically forces these countries to buy a certain amount in order to keep their currency stable. It's no surprise that as a result of China's booming economy, they have announced that they will be removing this peg at some point in 2005. This will surely cause a drop in the dollar which will result in a drop of investor confidence. As a result we could see a further decrease in foreign corporate investment. The tension between Saudi Arabia (The single biggest investor, in the US economy accounting for 24% if I'm not mistaken) and the US, could serve as a catalyst whereby if they pulled out a portion of their investment, other countries would follow. All this amalgamated could contribute to a -600 drop on the Dow.

Astronomical Debt:
2005 budget highlights: Outlays: $2.568 trillion. Deficit: $390 billion. Discretionary outlays: $922 billion. Mandatory outlays: $1.41 trillion. Interest payments: $211 billion. Need I say more? The question, however, has to be asked: where does all this money go? The answer is quite simple, most of it can be attributed to the war in Iraq and all the other small wars in developing countries that don't get any press. To quote a knowledgeable friend in this area, how long will other countries invest in a silent worldwide genocide?

History has a way of repeating itself:
You can look at any empire in the past, whether it be the Greeks, Romans, Napoleon, Egypt, and now perhaps the U.S., they all come to an end for virtually the same reason: they try and conquer too much in a small time period. Sure there were other reasons that contributed such as Napoleon's army not believing in his "vision" etc. but they all seem to stem from this same problem. Human morale will only hold out so long when resources are stretched thin. With the involvement in Iraq and now talk of Iran, Syria, and N. Korea, surely something has to give.

Now with all this being said, although the current president has an IQ of a monkey, policy makers are no dummies and have no doubt thought this through. I'm sure they have a few tricks up their sleeves and Iraq was one of them, we shall see if the newly acquired oil reserves will be enough to sustain economic growth and fuel the empire.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Busy Busy

Well I haven't had a lot of time to post as of late, so I'm going to put up my top 10 favorite songs of all time (or at least the ones I feel are the top ten that pop into my head right away, in no particular order I might add) because I'm too lazy to think of anything else:

1.) 1979 - Smashing Pumpkins
2.) With or Without You - U2
3.) Madagascar - Art of Trance
4.) Fireworks - Tragically Hip
5.) Nuthin' But a "G" Thang - Dr. Dre

6.) Typical Situation - Dave Matthews
7.) Imagine - John Lennon
8.) Painted Black - Rolling Stones
9.) Can't Always get what you want - Rolling Stones
10.) Anything by Matt Good

Well after compiling this list I realized there are so many other songs over the years it is impossible to give a top 10 list, maybe 20 or 30 would capture them all. I missed Bob Marley, The Beatles, Radiohead, and so many others. Oh well, at least I hit just about every genre.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Mushroom Cloud Anyone?

Originally uploaded by rentonj.
Could policy makers be laying the groundwork for an Iran invasion? Unlike Iraq, Iran may have the capability of nuclear weapons, but just thinking about the ramifications that an invasion would cause throughout the rest of the world scares the shit out of me. If the Muslim world didn't hate the US before (and potentially any other Western country due to guilt by association), I don't think anyone could fathom the tension this would bring. I think this might be a long shot however as the war machine's resources are stretched fairly thin with the Iraq entaglement. Perhaps trade sanctions would be a more logical option. But you never know, when it comes to the general population of America, it's like the old saying goes: "Ignorance is bliss."

Then we have N. Korea. and Kim Jong Il. I'm not sure what will happen here, you have one trigger happy president controlling the most powerful country in the world, and a crazy dictator with nukes. That could just open a can of worms an have a snowball effect and our whole world would be one big mushroom cloud.

All I know is there is way too much drama and fighting in this world today and I can't for the life of me figure out why. Media and religion seem to pop into my head when I sit back and reflect.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Oil For Food

Well, the scandal is now finally out in the open and confirmed after an investigation. It seems as though America is flexing it's muscle now in an attempt to "clean house" at the U.N. The replacements no doubt will be American puppets put in place to facilitate their global advancement, perhaps even domination. Control of this pawn in the world power chest match might be more significant than what is appearent on the surface. Who knows what will happen, this is just one potential outcome that popped in my head.

In other news, President Bush unveiled the new budget proposal to congress today:

Receipts: $2.178 trillion. Outlays: $2.568 trillion. Deficit: $390 billion. Discretionary outlays: $922 billion. Mandatory outlays: $1.41 trillion. Interest payments: $211 billion.

hmmmmmmmmmmm... Wonder what they will do with all this money, I'll try and address some of these issues in my next post.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Media Power

Before I start this post I have to comment on American media. I find it quite humorous that the US has been touting the Iraqi election as the biggest liberation in history, democracy at it's finest, etc., etc., etc. Michael Jackson jury selection begins and the election barley makes the front page of CNN anymore (a single link is all I can find at the moment)... Anyways, moving right along:

Media is a powerful tool boy, perhaps the most influential tool in society today, The CIA and it's affiliated/owned news agencies is probably the biggest in the world, Al Jazeera might now be second as it has become the dominant source for Muslim news. I would infer that it's even gaining some exposure in some Western countries. I'm not sure why it took me this long to realize it, but I wonder if this was on the agenda of American policy makers when deciding to invade Iraq. One would think that this would cause great alarm in the white house. One of Al Jazeera's biggest offices is located in Baghdad. Taking out this location and replacing it with the American propaganda machine might be a step (in the eyes of the white house) to influence a percentage of the Muslim population into thinking along the lines of Westerners. In my mind it would probably constitute the biggest infiltration with respect to another region's media source since WWII. Time will tell I suppose.