Winning the War — Easter

Did losing the battle mean winning the war? Or was it just a loss on the way to the victory that ended all battles.

One example of the former:
The fight was real but it was at the same time contrived to ensure the victory that sealed the fate of all, according to their choices. God in His wisdom provided a quasi Trojan horse solution to the desire of man for the otherwise unattainable true nirvana.

Today is indeed a good (Fri)day: we commemorate the battle that won the war; the battle where the Protagonist died. “It is finished,” He said. And it was so. And He came back alive!

Happy holidays.


When It’s Better To Owe A Thousand People And Not Just One

If you have many small credits, no single creditor can make a significant demand.

We know that the borrower is subject to the lender. That’s natural law. It thus seems better to owe a thousand people one Naira each than to owe one person a thousand Naira. Because if at all a creditor would make a significant demand, particularly in a near default, they’d have to negotiate with the others to make headway. If you owe a single country, then you might have created a threat to you national security. Because there’s no one else to help reduce their negotiating power.

Banks owe very many people; people not likely to make demands at the same time; people who will not demand all that they’re owed.

This is what it comes down to: negotiating power. However if the can all agree, you would still have likely bought yourself some time (during their negotiating period). It might be terrible short though, but there’s always that chance (and hope) that they would argue and squabble for a ‘long’ time, giving you some room to breathe.

If you find out that you owe too much to one country, diversify. Many normal companies try to diversify their product portfolio as in insurance measure. Diversify your debt portfolio such that one single country cannot try to claim your land without another crying foul.

This might be good news for China if the US can (or if they will ‘let’ the US) pull it off, because they can rid themselves of some of the, maybe, toxic debt stock they hold. On the other hand, it means China buys more from the US than they sell to them.

How is that going to happen?

It is possible, but I doubt that China would sit idly by.

What can other countries do?

Buy from others even though it might me more expensive. In the long run, you might actually save your country from its inability to not import certain goods and/or improve her overall balance of payments.

We sometimes do this at a micro level, buying from someone/somewhere for the emotional value of doing so when we had an equally easy option of buying the same thing cheaper from another.

In a popular Mafia, crime boss, loan shark scenario, what is the likelihood that one of the creditors would count their losses and ‘kill’ the debtor? Will the others sit by and let someone kill the hope of the return of their monies and get away with it?

Choosing Your Battlefield

If Ireland had left the decision about government recognition for homosexual marriage to the courts, and if the USA had left this same decision to a national referendum, what might have been the results?

When the battlefield admits only a one-on-one match, you’d better be like David—with the sling, skill, and speed to deliver the killer shot. And you’d better make sure your opponent has an exposed forehead or an Achilles heal you can place a fatal blow on. The government and people of Iceland where able, willing, and quick to cut off the heads of bad banks to repair their banking system.

Iceland had chosen to let their bad banks die after their financial crisis about the end of the twentieth century. They shrunk their battlefield to picking up the pieces, and it made the fight very short. They look like they came out with better results than the bail-out college, even if one might argue that the lighter you are, the lighter you fall.

Where there are many ‘enemies’ of similar ability and capacity as one, be very efficient; where they shall beat you, leave them; and make as little noise as possible when you’re just starting off in a territory where big guns already exist. That’s advice by Bruce Greenwald and Judd Kahn in ‘Competition Demystified.’ Fight where you’re stronger than your opponents; fight when you have what it takes to beat them.

So that key questions to ask are whether we can, or make ourselves can, and on which battlefield can we can. These questions aren’t mutually exclusive because what we do, the path we take, says much about the battle we envision and defines our battlefield.