Dear Fellow TTPers -- Are you ready to have a mind-blowing lot of fun and have the most intense learning experience at the same time? In fascinatingly unknown parts of Europe with incredible history, natural beauty, and unique cultures?
Then please consider joining me and your fellow rational conservatives on The Countries That Don’t Exist. I can only take four more of you with me. Click on the link, and if you’re intrigued, then email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll send you the full details.
Life is short – the time for a great adventure is now. Let’s have that adventure together. Thanks… Jack
To get car insurance in Russia you have to have a working dashcam. Here is a collection of Russian dashcam video clips that should dissuade anyone from driving there. Note that these are the good ones where people miraculously don’t get hurt.
Stupor Mundi. This is the week Western Civilization has a new Stupor Mundi.
The original was the most extraordinary man of the Middle Ages, so accomplished in so many ways his contemporaries called him Stupor Mundi, Latin for the Wonder of the World, since his brilliance and audacity left them in a state of stupefaction.
That would be Frederick II Hohenstaufen (1194-1250), Holy Roman Emperor, King of Italy, King of Germany, King of Burgundy, King of Sicily – and King of Jerusalem, having won the Sixth Crusade without a single battle or casualty, crowned Christian King in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher on March 18, 1229 with the blessing of the Moslem Sultan standing at his side who had just ceded Jerusalem to him.
Revered by Christians everywhere, he was hated by the Popes who excommunicated him four times, to which his reaction was a shrug.
What we are witnessing is the emergence of a new Stupor Mundi in the process of becoming the most extraordinary man of our day.
This has been a fabulous week, with so much to enjoy. Let’s get started!
Toledo, Spain. As you drive up the hill upon which this ancient city sits, at the city’s entrance you are greeted by this statue. It is of King Alfonso VI of León and Castile (1040-1109) holding his sword as the Christian cross symbolizing his liberating Toledo from Moslem rule.
What you are about to read is revelatory history. It starts 2,500 years ago, involves the heroically epic struggle of Christians for their freedom from Islam – lasting centuries – and ends with a shocking banner on the City Hall of Madrid hanging there today.
As a businessman, Trump knows that those are the rules. And as president that’s just what he did yesterday (6/01) in his inspirational speech about pulling out of the Paris climate agreement.
It was inspirational because it articulated better than any world leader has ever done before why environmentalism is in fact such a harmful creed.
Rather than get bogged down in the “science” of climate change — an elephant trap so arranged by climate alarmists to make anyone who disagrees with them look ignorant or “anti-science” — he cut to the chase and talked about the important stuff that hardly ever gets mentioned by all the other politicians, for some reason: the fact that the climate change industry is killing jobs.
This argument ought to be low hanging fruit to any half-way intelligent politician: it’s such an obvious way of connecting with the workers.
Yet Trump is the only one who has ever said it. And hearing him say it was a reminder of why it was that he won the presidential election. He connects with his people in a way that so many politicians just don’t.
1) Cease admiring them or 2) try to understand them and change their minds.
My choice is option two. But to try to change their minds, I must first try to understand their thinking.
I have concluded that there are a few reasons that explain conservatives who were Never-Trumpers during the election, and who remain anti-Trump today.
The first and, by far, the greatest reason is this: They do not believe that America is engaged in a civil war, with the survival of America as we know it at stake.
While they strongly differ with the left, they do not regard the left-right battle as an existential battle for preserving our nation. On the other hand, I, and other conservative Trump supporters, do.
The returns of the JP Morgan Emerging Market Bond Index (EMBI+) are heavily influenced by what happens in Venezuela.
The reason is simple: while Venezuela represents only about 5% of the index, it accounts for about 20% of its yield -- because the yield on Venezuelan debt is about five times larger than that of other countries in the index, a reflection of the huge risk premium that Venezuela faces.
As has been widely reported in the media, Venezuela is experiencing one of the most calamitous economic collapses ever, accompanied by massive doses of political repression and human-rights violations.
So investing in the EMBI+ means that you rejoice when Wall Street analysts inform you that the country is literally starving its people in order to avoid restructuring your bonds. It is exactly the same with Goldman Sachs.
“We can no longer be friends,” she had said. “Allah does not allow me to be friends with people like you.”
This conversation took place in a city in Indonesia with a reputation for tolerance. The two girls were students at a high school described as “the most tolerant” in the city. The caller who ended the friendship is a Muslim, the devastated recipient of the call a Christian.
An incredible tragedy is unfolding in the world’s largest Muslim country, where its democratic government and culture of tolerance is being destroyed by fanatic Islamists. Can they be stopped in time? And is there anyone in Indonesia with the courage to do so?
Which portion of government spending provides little or no value? The president just released his budget proposal, and the predictable chorus of complaints immediately began from those who want more spending for “whatever.”
Politicians and government officials all too often measure success by how much is spent on something rather than the value received for the expenditure.
If government operated more like business, each year the citizens ought to receive more government “service” for the same real cost, because of productivity gains. But government agencies and their lobbyists mostly demand bigger budgets each year with no corresponding increase in “service.”
The goal should be fewer people being dependent on government — but many politicians and government bureaucrats have a power-and-money interest in more people being dependent.