Greece does not have its own currency to devalue to gain economic relief. And so the nation's debt problem can't be fixed by issuing more loans with conditions that kill economic growth. If truth be told, there has never been a bailout designed to bail out the Greeks. The aid issued to date has been all about buying time to play musical bondholders.
Perhaps you've heard of the notion of a global carbon quota. I first learned of it a few years ago, and got a refresher on the subject last month. It jolted me then, but even more so this time. Here's an overview, with some basic math.
To be sure, the Forum once again generated news and social content about business trends, societal needs, industry insights and new voices in the global economy. But the real conversations in the hallways were that global business leaders are more concerned over the threat of Euro collapse than debating problems of income inequality.
The short term problem is that Alberta has expensive oil which will make it challenging for all governments to achieve their fiscal goals. Revenues are down. Already we are seeing the incredible shrinking surplus of the Harper government. Medium term the market will right itself and business will pick up.
Some might describe it as the genius of capitalism; the ability to adapt on the fly according to the circumstances. Hence the drive to technological fixes in alternative energy generation, storage, and distribution. While the existential threat to the species is a clear and present danger, capitalism's ability to adjust is subject only to the limitations of the human mind.
My first order of business would be to banish the heinous credit default swaps, which, believe it or not, are bets on whether a country or company will go broke. I can hear the conversation at home in the evening: 'Hello dear, what did you do at the office today?' 'Aw, just the usual. I placed a $3 billion bet that Spain will go bankrupt by the end of the year.'
Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Finance Minister Jim Flaherty went to Russia for the G20 conference this week, and decided that this would be a good time to pressure the world into cutting government spending and implementing austerity measures. Unfortunately, to the leaders at the G20 -- stuck as they are between deficits and sinking economies, between the option of printing money and doing nothing -- Harper and Flaherty are just as likely to come off as a bunch of self-righteous jerks.
I come across a lot people who have been taught to equate the idea of 'risk' with losing their money. A common fear is that if they invest in the stock market, they might lose their money. But is that really what you have to worry about? I don't think so.
We don't know for sure who will be tapped for the job of Governor of the Bank of Canada. What we do know is that the individual will be a Canadian. No other nationalities were invited to apply. But, in 2013, does such a citizenship restriction even make any sense? Or is it just another manifestation of good, old-fashioned Canadian parochialism?
Today, it was revealed that not only were Asian features deemed unworthy of appearing on bank notes, but also Black, Aboriginal, South-Asian and Gay ones, as well. A pattern of institutionalized xenophobia is emerging, and it ain't pretty. The Bank of Canada fiasco is only the latest incident in a long chain of slights.
Well, I mocked and I teased but in the end, I couldn't resist. Year-end retrospectives might be trite, but dagnabbit, they're also a lot of fun. So here's my picks for the "Top Five Media Bites Moments of 2012", also known as the "Top Five Times the Canadian Press Was Inadvertently More Interesting Than the Stories They Were Trying to Cover."
No one can control what events will shape our world in any given time period. But collectively we can choose what stories we allow to shape our memory. That's why murderer Luka Magnotta was the wrong person for the Canadian Press to choose as Canada's 2012 Newsmaker of the Year.
What an exciting time to be a political addict in Canada. Who says Canadian politics is boring? People who aren't paying attention, that's who. First, the Mayor of Toronto, Rob Ford, was removed from office. Second, we find out that Mark Carney got headhunted to the U.K. And elections, you know, the best sport ever? There were three! And they weren't boring, at all.
Mark Carney, the Bank of Canada governor who's been appointed to head the Bank of England, may go down in history as the best prime minister Canada never had. Carney has a Harvard and Oxbridge background. He is bilingual, with George Clooney good looks, and the ability to deliver pithy sound-bites. Overall, Carney, 47, was seen as the very antithesis of Justin Trudeau, 40, whose most challenging management mission to date was teaching a high school drama class. Why, then, did he slam his door on this opportunity?
The striking appointment of Mark Carney as the new governor of the Bank of England can be interpreted in a wide number of ways -- from a view that highlights the global governance dimension to British and Canadian-specific aspects of the story. From a transnational perspective, Carney's appointment is another sign of the rise of free-agent technocracy in an age of crisis.
Mark Carney has accepted a position as the Governor of the Bank of England effective next July. The Bank of England needs a man like Mark Carney. His expertise is understandably in high demand. Our Canadian economy has immensely benefited from his tenure at the Bank of Canada, and the Bank of England is now fortunate to have him.