386 days ago
IKEA has become the latest firm to respond to woke snowflake tantrums and to pull its adverts from the little watched news channel GB News. It says that Andrew Neil’s channel does not share its “humanistic” values without being able to cite one instance from its 60 hours on air of why this is the case. As well as being a betrayal of free speech this is rank hypocrisy from a company operating four stores in Saudi Arabia.
996 days ago
For almost a decade the Western media and our political leaders have told us all that Syria is simple. ISIS are the really bad guys but Preseident Assad is almost as wicked. We have been spoon fed tales of the bad things he has done even if the evidence of some of his “chemical attacks” was very dubious indeed. We have backed the heroic Kurds (clearly good guys and gals) and also those termed “The Moderates” by David Cameron, the Free Syrian Army, the FSA.
1025 days ago
I discuss one of them in full. One have referred to before, part 2 is tomorrow bt I can’t say what it is for another few weeks. Then I look at today’s Neil Woodford shocker Benevolent AI and how much Neil personally has trousered from valuations now shown to be a joke. Then the attack on Saudi Arabia and what it means for oil prices, gold and the global economy. It is not as dramatic as if this had happened in the 1970s. But there is a dramatic scenario to consider.
1688 days ago
Today's pre-placing ramp is for serial offender in this regard, Strat Aero (AERO). The totally insolvent AIM dog boasts that it has signed a "significant" Commercial Agreement with Alnahdi Aviation Technology , experts in aviation technology in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to collaborate on establishing a UAV Training Centre in the KSA." Fab. So how much will this bring in? Er...
1853 days ago
The BBC and the rest of the liberal media cannot stop telling us what an awful, intolerant place Israel is. Regularly mainstream politicians from the left compare its actions to those of Nazi Germany. And on that note, I am delighted to see that today it is Gay Pride day in Tel Aviv.
1872 days ago
If i was living in Saudi Arabia I'd be arrested for writing that. If i was lucky I'd be lashed. Folks have actually been beheaded for making less offensive, but true, statements. The kleptocractic regime of Saudi Arabia has a human rights record which is worse than that of Assad's Syria pre-war, it commits war crimes on an Industrial scale in Yemen and it exports Islamofascist extremism and terror across the globe. Yet President Trump is blowing them off as if the Saudi Royal family were the nicest guys on earth. Why?
2168 days ago
As Obama's Secretary of State, it was crooked Hillary that did so much to create the mess that is Syria today. Over the past four years President hopey change has slowly backtracked and at last peace is in sight out East. Both ISIS and the, largely Islamofascist and often Al-Qaeda affiliated, Free Syrian Army, FSA, are in retreat. But crooked Hillary has plans to change all of that.
What is it with the Democrats and blood lust?
2175 days ago
The papers this week carried graphic images of a 12 year old boy being beheaded in Syria. Ghastly, I hear you cry. ISIS must be stopped. Thank God we are doing our bit by backing rebel fighters in the Free Syrian Army. Problemo: it was those rebel fighters that did the beheading.
This is no surprise to readers of this website. Back in 2012
2286 days ago
You will remember how for the first two years of the War in Syria folks like Hilary Clinton, President Obama, David Cameron and the entire Western press corp told us that the really bad guy in Syria was President Assad. Okay his human rights record was actually among the least worst in the region but he had to go and so the West started arming and funding a coalition opposed to Assad, many of whom turned out to be Islamofascist supporters of Al-Qeada with a propensity for chopping folks heads off. But that did not matter because Assad was the bad guy. We are not at war with Al Qaeda, we have never been at War with Al Qaeda, pretened our leaders. George Orwell would have been proud of them.
I flagged up the fact that the folks we in the West werebacking were monsters several times - see HERE - but no-one cared and as the country descended into chaos the real Islamofascists of ISIS saw a vacuum and filled it.
The West and its allies such as Saudi Arabia - a Mid East Country which really does have an appalling human rights record - carried on funding and arming our own Islamofascists
2432 days ago
I watched Question Time on Thursday. He may be a fruitcake on some issues but on Syria as we contemplate the mess we have created with Asad, ISIS, the FSA, Saudi Arabia and the rest, Hitchens was on fire. The complacent Justine Greening was like the rest of the political class an incoherent mess.
2461 days ago
We, or at least our leaders have blood on our hands. We support the House of Saud which in turn commits wholesale human rights abuses, war crimes, supports terrorists, exports extremism and treats migrant workers in an overtly racist way, as slaves with no rights. Yet David Cameron is taking British support to new levels. There is a better way.
2728 days ago
Imagine what would happen if Israel beheaded a woman for whatever crime within sight of the Wailing Wall? There would be mass demonstrations, the Guardian would lead a media campaign demanding sanctions and worse. This would be universally condemned by Western leaders and the state of Israel would be – rightly – slated as Neanderthal and barbaric. Luckily those wicked Jews don’t do that sort of thing.
But yesterday the Saudi’s beheaded a woman - Lalia Bint Abdul Muttablib Basim - in Mecca. Video footage
3411 days ago
The answer to the 1998 financial crisis was to slash borrowing costs across the globe so that we all over-leverages and misallocated our capital. On that occasion it was junk dotcom investments and property. In 2008 another crises and the same solution. The fact is that the world has been misallocating capital for decades, led by Governments freed from prudence by the abandonment of the gold standard in 1971.
With each crisis that crops up, the solution is simply to print more money and to get folks to take on even more debt. You owe too much – heck borrow some more. And so capital is misallocated and bubbles grow ever bigger. But at some stage the party ends. It will. The current set up is simply unsustainable.
And so what will be the black swan event that causes the mother of all reality checks? If offer four runners and riders. Inevitably if one occurs it will trigger the others. And it will probably be a fifth black swan that no-one has thought much about that starts the party. But here goes.
1. The Chinese property bubble. I have written before on numerous occassions about just how mammoth this is and how it really can knock the Chinese (and thus the worlds) economy for six. The answer of the authorities to the slowdown in the PRC in 2012 was to pump more hot air into this bubble. It has to be my top black swan bet. Read this piece out yesterday on Zero Hedge if you doubt me.
My major work from September 2012 on China, the misallocation, fraud an inevitably of a crash is HERE
2. A market refusal to buy US T Bonds in an auction. The US Government is three years away from having a balance sheet like that of Greece just before the crisis. An economically illiterate President and, to show balance, a spineless Republican party in Congress just cannot get to grips with what is happening. The US today is like sick Britain at the end of WW1. But it will take the US far less time than we took to see its currency tank. At some stage folks will refuse to stump up cash for a debt that yields sod all and is clearly unrepayable and unsupportable.
3. Sovereign default across Europe accompanied by widespread Civil unrest. The only folks buying Spanish debt right now are the Spanish state pension funds. Oooh lucky Spanish state pensioners. But those funds are tapped out. Spain is bust and its economy is enjoying an EU austerity driven spanking session which Max Mosley could only dream of. It is not just Spain. Italy, Greece, Portugal are in the same mess. The Irish economy and society has been beaten to a pulp in the name of fiscal responsibility and yet could still collapse. France is heading the wrong way fast as is the UK. The collapse of the Euro as we know it has to be an odds on bet it is a matter of how it occurs.
4. The Arab spring moving to Saudi Arabia. A regime with no legitimacy is kleptocratic, autocratic and barbaric. It bribes the people with a fraction of the nation’s wealth and panders to radical Islam in a most unhealthy sort of way but it is unloved. One day it will fall. Revolution in the world’s largest oil producer could perhaps trigger unforeseen events elsewhere.
Hey, maybe we can all carry on spending beyond our means, leveraging up as individuals and as States for a good while yet. We have been kicking this can down the road for decades so maybe we can carry on for another few decades. Or maybe not. One day something will happen and we will find our noses against the wall at the end of the Cul-de-sac. That day may be sooner than we think.
For more thoughts from Tom Winnifrith follow him on twitter @tomwinnifrith
3683 days ago
I do not care who paid for Baroness Warsi’s various jollies abroad. I would not pay to go to a backwards kleptocracy like Saudi Arabia so I can sympathise with her not wishing to cough up for her fare to Riyadh. And so what if her business partner was once a member of some Islamofascist grouping of nutters. That is, in my view, no reflection on the chairwoman of the Conservative party. But…