The biggest property bubble in the world, China. Shadow banks, speculation, and rampant gaming of the system including the building of sham multi story houses to milk compensation for land acquisition. Building a city large enough to absorb the population of five surrounding cities and remaining almost completely empty.
That’s what I love about the internet, you can get almost any perspective, this one for example is from two western guys who like to record their motorbike adventures around China.
I love one his last comments, “…at least there wont be a homelessness problem once the bubble bursts”.
Clive Palmer has now shown what a shrewd operator he is. Many saw his apparent spray at the Chinese government as an off the cuff frustration as the QandA presenter pressured him on a commercial case he was embroiled in. Whether Clive realized it not (an we suspect with the money he has he can afford the best advice) he attacked at the most critical point.
Clive has shown he is able to legitimately convert financial power into political and media power.
This gave Clive Palmer two powerful weapons in his current cases against a Chinese business over money he is owed.
The Chinese government hates scandals.
In Australian English ‘Mongrel’ means or mixed breed dog , applied to sports (particularly boxing) means tough aggressive man.
Mike Tyson’s boxing style might be described as Mongrel, tough, aggressive, and lacking complex technique.
When translated, the term Mongrel means mixed or hybrid.
Chinese are very sensitive on questions of race and race mixing and genealogy.
Bastard looses nothing in the translation but is generally considered more offensive in China than here, as the Chinese are very conservative in family matters.
Chinese are also very sensitive to insults in general, so much effort is spend on keeping up good appearances (saving face) it becomes a significant distraction in day to day life.
Chinese people eats dogs and wealthy people eat more dogs that those who are poor. Chinese people realize westerners find the idea of eating dog objectionable seeing dogs largely as beloved pets or animals of service. Even wild or feral dogs which are culled are not eaten in the west, eating dog s is seen as a cultural taboo through much of the west.
Bastard also continues the theme of sexual improper conduct and adds in illegitimacy and despicable nature.
The most curious thing about the uses of these insults is that they are an anachronism even for someone of Clive Palmer’s age. The terms are now obscure in language generally, and are considered locally only mildly offensive.
So a mildly offensive remark in the Australian vernacular translates via a dog whistle (pun intended) to a highly offensive slur against a litigation opponent very much under control of the Chinese government. It entirely possible this scandal has reduced the resolve of Palmer’s opponent in the court case due to Chinese Government political pressure. On the third party adjudicator side of the commercial case, the court is now under pressure to resolve the case in Palmer’s favor, as he is willing to damage trade relations with a very important international trade partner. Palmer’s PUP party has a controlling wedge in the senate, able to block any legislation the opposition wont support. The opposition is unlikely to support Liberal/national policy because of its shock doctrine budget.
That’s a hell of a gambit by a man who can afford to move large pieces on the board.
Clive Palmer clearly is economically rational and hardly a man to do any thing without very careful precognition. Palmer openly admits he rarely attends the lower house where he is a member citing the fact his single vote there generally makes little difference in the outcomes. This in itself a dog whistle to the disenchanted vote who see both major parties as being out of touch and rightly seeing greens as being destructive Marxists. This was no accident, it was a carefully planned and disguised scandal to get leverage in his commercial case.
The apology was a week in forth coming so one can imagine the back room horse trading that was done to produce such an apology and smooth things over.
Billionaire mining magnates don’t apologize for free.
Clive Palmer now has significant leverage in his commercial case, after all he would not appear on a leftist echo chamber like QandA without a good reason.
Money is always a good reason.
*Scoring political points a good ancillary benefit.
How did the Chinese government feel about this?
Heres a clue, be sure to read the comment to this Chinese newspaper link.
Bitcoin sis certainly not dead. This latest price hike is apparently based on Chinese businessmen seeing the real estate market tank and tired of capital flight (and other) laws are moving into Bitcoin. Of course many use Bitcoin as a way of avoiding taxes and regulations, avoiding regulations (and making a deal) is somewhat of a Chinese tradition. You only have to see a Chinese Buddhist monk in the middle of a group ceremonial dance stop dead to answer his mobile phone to know that making an arrangement is a very serious matter. People ate already talking about $10,000USD Bitcoins. Of course there are about 12M bitcoins in circulation and there is a limit of 21M (by 2140), and fiat currencies (like the US Dollar) keeps spewing out more worthless paper and plastic. I doesn’t take a genius to work out scarcity is a fundamental driver of economics.
In trying to get a local take on the bitcoin market I stumbled into this local Bitcoin trader, who ran out of Bitcoins today. I’m sure s/he will try to get more.
Many of you will be using a PC based computer or one of its many inspired clones or competitors to read this right now.
So how did the PC enter our world?
Here the birth weight stats:
Name: 5150 IBM PC
CPU: 8088 4.77MHz
RAM: 16 Kb -256Kb
Graphics: Mono chrome monitor
Removable media: 5 1/2 ” floppy Mylar discs
Hard drive: optional extra
And all it would cost you in todays money is about $4000 AUD (unless you bought it in a pub from a guy you don’t remember the name of, come to think of it, what he looked like).
A computer today has about 1 million times the processing power for less than a tenth of the cost.
And what is a computer? A question we don’t but probably should ask our selves…
It a tool which is good at mimicking the functions of another tool, provided it has the correct added hardware and the task can be thoroughly described.
It can be a tool of oppression or a tool of liberation, the choice is yours.
So what we do now, we take for granted; ‘someone’ types something into a computer or smart phone and suddenly many other ‘someones’ can know that thought stream, and even respond to it over vast distances in more or less real time.
It hasn’t always been ‘beer and skittles’ however.
The IBM corporation has a murky past with the first major contracts being gained by selling and supporting tabulating machines to Nazi Germany to catalog the population, particularly dissidents.
One of todays Tech giants Apple, uses what could easily be described as slave labor to produce many of its products in Asia (particularly China).
The conditions of people who make these wonderful( but taken for granted) electronic devices often work in arduous conditions, with some factories installing anti suicide nets on their multistory buildings.
Many PC’s still run 32 bit operating systems as a hangover from Windows XP and Intel’s successful attempts to stifle AMD’s innovation into 64 bit processing in the mid 2000’s.