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Read commentary from industry experts and SWP's feature writers.
All countries have a “shelf-life” of sorts. Generally, they begin when an old, top-heavy government collapses from its own weight. The end of the old regime is characterized by civil unrest, revolution, secession, economic collapse or some combination of these conditions.
Ancient Greece is credited as raising the societal structure to new heights. Whenever this period is referred to, philosophers and historians are quick to mention that the ancient Greeks gave the world Democracy. Yet, Socrates, who is regarded as having been a rather thoughtful fellow, eyed democracy with deep suspicion. He was right to do so.
In 2016, James Delingpole commented that toffs hate Brexit because it’s the Peasants’ Revolt. For non-British readers, the word “toff” is a shortened form of “toffee-nosed,” a slang term for the rich, or upper class. But, more important is the reference to the Peasant Revolt of 1381, which is little-known on the western side of the Atlantic.
Left-wing activists have recently been increasingly active in seeking to limit opposing thought in order to create a more ubiquitous “groupthink.” One effort in accomplishing this has been to propose the creation of a “Human Rights Committee” in order to monitor the economic transactions of “white supremacist groups and anti-Islam activists.”
Recently, an eminent gold adviser whom I know and have a high regard for, stated that holders of precious metals would be well-served by keeping their metals in a remote location, saying, “distance equals security.” (He lives in the US and recommends storage in New Zealand, as it’s as far away from him as possible.)
Here we have a most interesting collection of signage. Some low-level civil servant who’s in charge of deciding what the motorist may do at this particular junction has become quite thorough in creating restrictions. The motorist may not proceed, may not turn left or right, and, most interestingly, in the second sign from the bottom, may not reverse out. In essence, “You’re stuck here and whatever you do to get out, you’re in violation of the rules we’ve placed upon you.”
"There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved." - Ludwig von Mises
In the late eighteenth century, Bishop George Berkeley posed the question,
“If a tree falls in a forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?”
Since that time, generations of university philosophy professors have required their students to consider the question. Countless classroom time has been taken up in pondering it. In many cases, students would be required to write a report containing their answer and they might even be graded on it.
For centuries, East Indians have regarded gold as the primary source of wealth. All Indians own gold if they can afford to. They keep it as close as possible, sometimes in coin form, but often as jewellery, since “wearing wealth” means that it can be kept very close. They’re often especially reluctant to trust banks to hold their gold.
History has an extraordinary tendency to repeat itself time and again.
The same mistakes that rulers make in one era are repeated in subsequent eras. Political leaders have a nagging habit to want to grow governments to unmanageable proportions, invading other sovereign nations, whilst increasingly dominating the electorate at home.