Monday, 31 January 2011

The Revolution in Military Affairs

RMA is something of a dirty word amongst many circles, even its adherants have accepted its something of a harlot that promised much but delivered little.

I think this is, unfair.
RMA hasnt really worked yet, but i dont believe its been 'believed' yet either.

Battlefield Intel is still something that a (relativly) small cadre monitors and issues from upon high, and all that can come from upon high is blobology.

But i dont believe this is a problem with the idea, more the method.
Imagine a troop, or even section, had its own intel bloke, who was responsible for drawing upon the various intel soirces to provide real time 'HMG to your left' to his troop, rather than 'brigade' here.

Maybe, but artilery was once the preserve of a couple of artisans and a few dozen labourers.
Today, strategic artilery reports to brigade commanders and Lt. Cols have light artilery troops.
Is it really any bigger a step to have an intelligence troop in a battalion?

note, this doesnt preclude battlefield scouts, who can ride challies for all i care

Friday, 28 January 2011

Two Questions

Question 1
Are 'airfix' or equivalant models fishtank safe?

Question 2
Do airfix do The Belgrano?

Thursday, 27 January 2011

One of us is very wrong, is it me?

Jeff Randall is advising we buy Euros, because the single currency is finished.

Once the iPigs, or possibly anyone who isnt German, is expelled, the currency will become another "hard" Duetche Mark.

But I'm not sure thats the case.

There are far more Euro's than there were Duetche Marks. If the Spanish pull out and reintroduce the potato, theres a lot of Spanish Euro's that are suddenly, in the air.
Spain could convert them to pasatas, which would work with notes, but would it work with bank accounts?
All EUros could be converted into .90 New Euros and .10 Pesetas, but then I dont see where holding Euro's now gets you ahead.
Your getting into club med funny money at the top floor and that elevatator only goes one way baby. Sure, you'll have your Hard Marks too, but surely you'd be better holding ANYTHING else until the break up?

Now Randall is at least vaguely in the area of competant usualy, so I'm stuck.
Any of my loyal reader knows what I've missed?

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Just Expel the Province!

Autonomous Mind has a piece on Ireland, to the effect that we can shortly expect it to kick off.

Now thats not exactly a surprise, since the budget for bribing the IRA to play nice has been cut.

I'm forced to ask once again, why should I care?
They want Independance? They live on ****ing welfare!!!
Asign them a portion of the national debt based on population and send immigration officers to the ferry terminals.

Job done.
Let them kill each other over the spoils, chuckle.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Its still a good book

I quite like Dune, even though its two central assumptions, that arabs are a master martial race with a transport trade monopoly were rather disproven by the fact that arabs cant fight for toffee and opec spent more time screwing itself than the empire.

Is it Wilful Stupidity?

I just cant think of another cause

Steve Liesman explains so well today, a 100% rise in the price of wheat would only translate to a 10% hike in the price of bread. What happens to the other 90% (which incidentally annihilates the producer's margin but Steve didn't get to page two in that particular Inflation for Dummies book), is apparently unclear to the CNBC head economist.

There is no other 90% you F-in Moron.

The price of a loaf of bread at a supermarket contains many elements.
The cost to the supermarket of buying bread from the baker, displaying it on a shelf and selling it to you at a till and their profit.
The cost of the baker of buying flour from the mill, baking it into bread, transporting it to the supermarket and all the associated labour costs, along with his own profit.
The cost of the miller buying the WHEAT and the electricity to run his mill.

The cost of shelf space in the supermarket hasnt changed.
The cost of floor sweepers in a bakery hasnt changed.
All thats changed is the price of wheat, which is a small part of the final cost of a retailed loaf of bread.

Doubling 10% of 100 gives 110, not 200.

Monday, 24 January 2011

BBC To Update Programming

After 14 years of "you've never had it so good" sit coms about wealthy happy middle class people the BBC is to run more programs about poor people "getting by".

Hmmm, does the BBC run programs about how everythings great when we have a labour government, anmd how everythings crap under the Tories?
Keep an eye out for spitting image eh?

Thursday, 20 January 2011

You Cant Crush the Nobility and then Demand they Nobley Bail Your Arse Ou

One of the many people yet to accept that the Welfare State is just ****ed has a few interesting ideas at Zero Hedge

The Key Point, is that we must return to "Noblesse Oblige".

The problem is, the author clearly doesnt understand the concept or why it worked.
The thing is, the very wealthy fund THEIR pet projects for THEIR reasons, be it City Parks for the poor, or Social Centres and Gymnasiums to free workers from the evils of the ale house.

The State has spent three-six generations telling such people that they are stupid, their ideas are wrong and government knows best.
Now its come to transpire that government in fact didnt know best, you cannot simply say "Noblesse Oblige" and expect them to fund your delusions because, retard, who the hell do you think paid for it for the past 50 years anyway? Community Organisers?

But just incase this measure might somehow have had some measure of sanity in it, he also wants to means test social security.
So, the pension pot everyone pays into and everyone draws from, well now only some people pay into and only some other people draw from. If you were careful and saved for retirement, your ****ed, if your near retirement, theres absolutly no reason to even try and help out, sod funding your 401k, you're only going to have other benefits cut to compensate.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

I Cant see that Mountain, its hidden by that mole hill

Zero Hedge, If I'm understanding this correctly, has some thoughts on how the EFSF will work in reality.

Greece will borrow $100 from the EFSF at 3% interest (why not?) and use the money to pay off a $100 gilt that bears 7% interest.
Netting a 4% saving.
Useful, but simply no where near enough to save Greece.

Now, Greeces default risk means that the debt its already issued is trading at a discount, but that will quickly close up once a buyer starts buying up all this debt, and as above, useful, but is this discount going to be deep enough to matter?

Thats before we consider that Greece is STILL spending like a drunken sailor and that state debts arent the only problem.
Can the Germans possibly be this stupid?

The Wage Price Spiral - Not a Chance

The usualy sound (well, god like really) Nadeem Walayat has predicted coming oversized wage demands in response to the oversized inflation being suffered.

the British economy is being sleep walked towards a wage price inflation spiral, as people refuse to be lied to anymore on temporary inflation statements and start to demand wage rises in line with inflation,

This is almost certainly not going to happen, simply because wages are not driven by relative prices, they are driven by worth.
Workers may demand higher wages, but they wont get them, they may strike for them, but all that will accomplish is striking themselves out of a job.

There are a few exceptions of course, but even they dont really have a leg to stand on. Driverless Trains will crush the transport workers soon enough, Airport Baggage handlers are factory floor passers with a security rating and local government workers are so useless who would notice if they went on strike?

If I went on strike, I'd be replaced.
A real terms paycut is different than a real job loss.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Its a good job I'm not Muad'Dib

I'd've died on p7 after smacking the reverend mother for being cheeky.

If you do not like your dollar peg, break it

Again and again the mainstream media, and even the competant blogosphere, repeats the mantra,
Bernankes QE is igniting inflation and driving the third world into poverty, starvation and revolution.

That is simply not the case

The only reason any other country is suffering inflation is if it chose to follow the US Dollar on its downwards plunge.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, the primary purpose of the QE program of the US is, was and always will be to break the backs of the dollar peggers through food inflation.
The average American spends 10% of his income on food, the average sweat shop worker is more like 30% and can be as high as 40%.
If food prices double, it inconveniences the American a little, The Chinese Assembly line loses 10 years of pay rises

Monday, 17 January 2011

The FSCS is advertising on Tv

I dont know if i should shit myself and buy canned food or write an angry post about waste.
I'll have a beer

Pushing the Nuclear Button

A new arguement was raised against TrT this weekend.
The UK would be better off cancelling the nuclear replacement and instead concentrating on conventional capacities.
Hardly new you say?
Well, the conventional capacities we should concentrate on, would be those that would allow the UK to destroy enemy WMD's before they are used.

Whats the point, reasoned the looney leftie, of relying on nuclear retaliation against people like Al-Queda who dont fear death, we need ther ability to destroy their nuclear weapons before they are used to bomb London.

"Like we did in Iraq" I asked?

The response was rather rude.

The conventional capabilities required to protect the UK from nuclear attack would be vast enough to allow us to win simultanious wars againt the United States, Russia, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea, Israel, South Africa, Iran, Saudi Arabia (almost certainly) asnd as time goes on, even more. Not only fight and win these wars, but do so before the "enemy" can use their nuclear weapons. Impossible
But not only that, it requires the intelligence capability to locate these weapons before they are usable, and the political will to use force to prevent their progress to usability.


Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Ambrose Reckons the Triggers About to be Pulled on Portugal

Spain held $86bn of Portugese Debt a little over a year ago.
It cant have dumped much of that debt, if anything, it must have aquired more.

Now, in the grand scheme of things, its not much, its under 8% of spains outstanding debt, but still, the last thing you need when people are questioning your solvency is your debtors to start collapsing.

Next to fall, Spain?
Or will something exciting happen, like Italy.

Either way, it'll be a laugh if the only remaining halfway solvent powers try and bail either out.

Comment of the Day

""It should be immediately obvious that if the loans we make to foreign countries to enable them to buy our goods are not repaid, then we are giving the goods away. A nation cannot grow rich by giving goods away. It can only make itself poorer. "
from "Economics in One Lesson""

The trade policy of the big exporters crushed in a paragraph.

If thats not madness...

Japan is bailing the Eurozone, or helping anyway.
Japan, land of the worlds greatest debts cant bail anyone out.

And of course, they arent trying, there are two viable explanations I can see.
The First, is a few last beats on the mercantilist drum, Yen Down + Euro Up = Japanese Exports Up

The Second, is that Japan is teetering on the edge of ageing related crisis. Its gilt holding pensioners are selling them in greater numbers than its gilt aquiring workers can buy them and its general workforce is declining. It needs foreign assets earning foreign currency with which to meet its day to day obligations.
To little to late and probably impossible anyway, but what else can they try?

Monday, 10 January 2011

Why Not

We can't have prices going up and down in line with commodities.

Why not?

I'm not sure what Carlsbergs FD is doing allowing MD to wander around the press halls spouting such rubbish, but he needs a talking to, or a sacking.

He thinks he should be allowed to hedge, because price changes are a no no, but there shouldnt be any hedge funds to hedge with, and although the government should legislate hedgefunds out of existance, it shouldnt touch brewers with minimum pricing.


PDR's are ****ing stupid

I'm supposed to justify my innovative behavior.

I work in the F-in accounts department!!!
What do you want from me!!!

Friday, 7 January 2011

Dumb and Dumber and Duberer?

Europe has solved its debt problems

Or so it thinks.
Obviously, it has not.

The methods muted so far, include out Browning Brown, it will have 4 seperate regulatory bodies, not 3, sounds good so far.

It will have the power to convert bank debt into equity and write off debt, which to my knowledge, is exactly what a bankruptcy court does today.

But this power doesnt apply to current debt, only new debt, which would be fine, if we were in 1995.

There would be a strict ranking of creditors. "Equity should be wiped out before any debt is written down, and subbordinated debt should be written down completely before senior debt holders bear any losses,"

Sensible, but again, isnt that the case today? Well, sometimes equity loses 95%and bondholders lose 10%, but functionaly, whats changed?

The plan allows a permanant prescence in suspect banks, but which banks are suspect, and why will these new regulators do any better than the old ones, who signed off Northern Rocks business plan every year?

Stronger banks will be required to help cover the costs of failure by weaker peers, creating a further buffer between the financial industry and the taxpayer.

So they plan to reward careful banks, by making them cover the losses of bad banks? And thats not moral hazard how?
You might as well run up a load of bad debts, because if you dont, you'll get everyone elses bad debts anyway.

Europe still has not accepted the reality that it is a debtor that wants to borrow more money, the creditor sets the terms, the begger accepts them.
Spain needs to borrow or roll over E300bn next year, why would anyone lend it that money, at anything but a realistic rate of interest when the debtor is already talking of default?

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Wait, Youre Serious?

I had honestly assumed it was a joke, but apparently not

People are being advised to buy "forever stamps" from the Post Office (US).

There are several reasons as to why the author thinks this clearly bonkers plan makes sense, but they basicaly boil down to the stamps are inflation proof, true, and the Post Office will be bailed out, probably true.

However, they have one rather vast flaw.
They can be defaulted on.
The Post office can simply print a new design of stamp and say all of the old design must be used by a certain date.
Regardless of what was said previously.