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News Links: Need to Create? Get a Constraint

  • Need to Create? Get a Constraint | Wired Science | Wired.com

    One of the many paradoxes of human creativity is that it seems to benefit from constraints. Although we imagine the imagination as requiring total freedom, the reality of the creative process is that it’s often entangled with strict conventions and formal requirements.

  • Daring Fireball: Getting Steve Jobs Wrong

    Steve Jobs really did re-imagine the world. The thing is, he actually made it happen, too.

  • VAT rise ‘will hit poorest hardest’ – The Irish Times

    The upcoming VAT hike will hit poorer people three times as hard as the better paid, one of Ireland’s largest trade unions has warned. Unite has demanded Minister for Finance Michael Noonan consider his position over the planned sales tax increase to 23 per cent.

  • Umfrage: FDP rutscht weiter ab – Deutschland – Politik – Handelsblatt

    In einer Emnid-Erhebung für die „Bild am Sonntag" verlieren die Liberalen im Vergleich zur Vorwoche einen Punkt und landen bei drei Prozent. Die Union verharrt nach ihrem Parteitag bei 33 Prozent, behauptet sich damit aber als stärkste politische Kraft. Danach folgt die SPD mit erneut 30 Prozent.

  • Die EZB als Lender of Last Resort – Kantoos Economics

    In der Summe: ja, ein Liquiditätsbackstop durch die EZB birgt Risiken. Und die Hilfe des IMF und der internationalen Gemeinschaft beim Durchdrücken von Reformen und Anpassung wird nötig sein. Aber es ist nicht so, als sei das Alternativszenario sonderlich günstig, und es ist nicht von der Hand zu weisen, dass eine Bankenkrise auf uns wartet, die ein Eingreifen der EZB erst richtig nötig werden lässt. In Deutschland müssen wir einsehen, dass diese Krise uns teuer zu stehen kommen kann, so oder so. Der Euro war, das darf man auch an einem Sonntag mal sagen, in seiner Ausgestaltung und Größe eine absolute Scheißidee.

  • Misattribution of Arousal « You Are Not So Smart

    The Misconception: You always know why you feel the way you feel. The Truth: You can experience emotional states without knowing why, even if you believe you can pinpoint the source.

  • Germany tightens the screw on ‘isolated’ Britain as tensions soar – Europe – World – The Independent

    An anti-British backlash gathered pace in Germany yesterday as David Cameron and Angela Merkel struggled to disguise the gulf between them on how to tackle the eurozone crisis. The Prime Minister returned from talks in Berlin with the German leader having made little progress in agreeing emergency action to stop the financial contagion spreading. Tensions were inflamed after a close ally of Ms Merkel predicted Britain would eventually adopt the euro.

  • BOB JANJUAH: If The ECB Tries To Save The Euro, I Will Just ‘Reload’ My Shorts And Wait For It All To Collapse

    Germany appears to be adamant that full political and fiscal integration over the next decade (nothing substantive will happen over the short term, in my view) is the only option, and ECB monetisation is no longer possible. I really think it is that clear and simple. And if I am wrong, and the ECB does a U-turn and agrees to unlimited monetisation, I will simply wait for the inevitable knee-jerk rally to fade before reloading my short risk positions.

  • Large scale ECB intervention is necessary but insufficient | Re-Define

    Given how important additional ECB support is to helping stem the panic in the Euro crisis at this stage, it is useful to look at how much it would actually help. An increasing number of shrill commentators have been implying that enhanced intervention from the ECB may be a ‘silver bullet’. It will be no such thing. We at Re-Define have been calling for the ECB to do more since before this call became fashionable but we have no illusions about what such an intervention can achieve.

  • The euro is a macro-economic weapon of mass destruction – it simply must be defused. – Telegraph

    The job of any central bank, the ECB included, is to act as "lender of the last resort" to commercial banks in its jurisdiction that are solvent, but in need of temporary liquidity. Central banks aren’t meant to dish-out free money to governments that have spent themselves into insolvency. "Moral hazard" isn’t some kind of intellectual indulgence. It’s a stark fact of life, a reminder that actions have consequences and those consequences can’t be ignored.

  • "Si la economía española sigue con los ajustes, le esperan dos décadas perdidas" · ELPAÍS.com

    En España, la toxicidad procede de un empacho de ladrillo. Pero Berlín y Bruselas están convencidos de que la crisis es esencialmente fiscal, y que el remedio es una sobredosis de ajustes vía BCE, FMI, reformas constitucionales, lo que sea. "Es un completo disparate", ataca Koo.

  • Pepper-Spray Brutality at UC Davis – James Fallows – National – The Atlantic

    Let’s stipulate that there are legitimate questions of how to balance the rights of peaceful protest against other people’s rights to go about their normal lives, and the rights of institutions to have some control over their property and public spaces. Without knowing the whole background, I’ll even assume for purposes of argument that the UC Davis authorities had legitimate reason to clear protestors from an area of campus — and that if protestors wanted to stage a civil-disobedience resistance to that effort, they should have been prepared for the consequence of civil disobedience, which is arrest. I can’t see any legitimate basis for police action like what is shown here. Watch that first minute and think how we’d react if we saw it coming from some riot-control unit in China, or in Syria. The calm of the officer who walks up and in a leisurely way pepper-sprays unarmed and passive people right in the face? We’d think: this is what happens when authority is unaccountable and has lost any sense of human connection to a subject population. That’s what I think here.

  • Greek party chief resists EU/IMF pressure on pledge | Reuters

    Greece’s creditors failed on Saturday to persuade the leader of the main conservative party to drop his refusal to sign a pledge that he will back austerity measures under a bailout deal aimed at saving the country from financial ruin.

  • Occupy Campuses and Violent Police Responses Taking Place Across Countries, Time | Rortybomb

    the occupy movement isn’t shifting to campuses but returning there.

About 

Edward Harrison is the founder of Credit Writedowns and a former career diplomat, investment banker and technology executive with over twenty years of business experience. He is also a regular economic and financial commentator on BBC World News, CNBC Television, Business News Network, CBC, Fox Television and RT Television. He speaks six languages and reads another five, skills he uses to provide a more global perspective. Edward holds an MBA in Finance from Columbia University and a BA in Economics from Dartmouth College. Edward also writes a premium financial newsletter. Sign up here for a free trial.

1 Comment

  1. Oldrich says:

    I wonder what would happen should the cops use the pepper-spray at one the Tea-party rallies against those angry white men carrying signs with Obama portrayed as  Hitler, armed to the teeth with live ammo. My guess is that it wouldn’t be that funny as this one…

  2. Oldrich says:

    I wonder what would happen should the cops use the pepper-spray at one the Tea-party rallies against those angry white men carrying signs with Obama portrayed as  Hitler, armed to the teeth with live ammo. My guess is that it wouldn’t be that funny as this one…