Author: <span class="vcard">Mark Tier</span>

The liberation of the Chinese woman

How the free market freed women and entrepreneurs in Hong Kong.

The visitor to Hong Kong today sees a bustling hive of energy where even the New Yorker is a slowpoke. It’s a place where people of all races and cultures live and work in harmony. It’s also a place where, long before the change of sovereignty from Britain to China in 1997, the gweilos [“long-nosed barbarians”] were being displaced in all spheres of human action by locals. [Under British rule, only the government lagged behind — only there could the criterion of race override the criterion of ability.]

Hong Kong is one of the most successful multi-racial societies in the world. But this is a relatively recent development.

The major difference between Hong Kong and other peaceful multi-racial/multi-ethnic societies like Australia (and the US) is that in Australia minorities, over time, lose their separate tribal identities and become members … Read the rest

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Five not-so-off-the-wall proposals to improve the political process

1. Appoint your own representative. Shareholder style.

In theory, you are represented in parliament by the person elected in your electorate. But what if you didn’t vote for him or her? Do you feel you’re truly represented? Can you withdraw your representation? Of course not. You’re saddled with whoever it is until it’s election time again.

I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather choose my own representative than be stuck with someone I neither like nor agree with just because I live in a specific geographic area. How about switching parliamentary representation to the company “proxy model?”

When you own shares in a company, you can either represent yourself and vote those shares at a general meeting or appoint someone to vote on your behalf. Specifying whether it’s  “yay” or “nay” on each specific issue.

Given today’s technology, there’s no reason why that model cannot be applied to … Read the rest

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How you can enter money heaven (and spend money you haven’t got yet)

Money heaven. The state where you can spend money infinitely and indefinitely, where you can forget about “spending less than you earn.”

Until recently, this state of bliss was only possible for governments: if you’re sitting in the Prime Minister’s Lodge, the White House, 10 Downing Street—or even the Kremlin—the idea of spending less than you earn is—how shall put it?—just for the plebs.

Doubt me?

Consider the United States government: from 1901 to 2017 its budget has balanced or been in surplus in just 27 of those 117 years. 22.5% of the time. For a total surplus of $120,372,000,000. Or $4½ billion per surplus year.

But this seriously overstates the achievement of the budget-balancers.

The 90 years of deficits adds up to a whopping negative number of $16,251.4 trillion.

$16¼ trillion!

On average, every year since 1901 the US government has spent $180.8 billion a year more than it … Read the rest

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