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Here's a statement of the obvious: The opinions expressed here are those of the participants, not those of the Mutual Fund Observer. We cannot vouch for the accuracy or appropriateness of any of it, though we do encourage civility and good humor.

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  • Russian economy on verge of collapse
  • edited February 28
    I would expect a bump in crypto like Bitcoin as a result: https://nypost.com/2022/02/24/how-russia-can-use-crypto-to-avoid-us-sanctions-over-ukraine/
    https://nytimes.com/2022/02/23/business/russia-sanctions-cryptocurrency.html
    The U.S. and Europe should attack crypto next, shutting down exchanges and banning its use, to prevent wealthy Russian oligarchs from laundering their rubles through it. Nations won’t do this of course, but they should.
  • I would expect a bump in crypto like Bitcoin as a result: https://nypost.com/2022/02/24/how-russia-can-use-crypto-to-avoid-us-sanctions-over-ukraine/
    https://nytimes.com/2022/02/23/business/russia-sanctions-cryptocurrency.html
    The U.S. and Europe should attack crypto next, shutting down exchanges and banning its use, to prevent wealthy Russian oligarchs from laundering their rubles through it. Nations won’t do this of course, but they should.

    TRUTH!
  • edited February 28
    Some pundits have coined it the”Russian Rubble” - Some synonyms for rubble if interested.

    Financial distress may cause irrational leaders to resort to ever more irrational acts. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen in this case.
  • Most of the talking financial heads on CNN and PBS say it will take weeks to months for the Russian economy to collapse, esp if Europe has to continue buying millions of nat gas and oil

    Having shut down their nuclear plants ( what were they thinking???) they are very dependent on Russia
  • France has relied on nuclear for a long time, with 70% of its electricity produced by its own reactors. France also exports its nuclear technology and reactors. Macron recently announced an expansion of reliance on nuclear a pledge that turn out to be prescient given the energy prices in Europe today.
  • Germany is most at risk, as they have closed about 50% of their nuclear plants recently and know import well over 50% of their energy from Russia
  • The phenomenon of unintended consequences at work in my mind: the graphic @davidmoran posted resembles the depiction of an invasion. Napoleon’s doomed invasion of Russia was depicted on a similar graph by Edward Tufte, showing how many troops reached the outskirts of Moscow in warm temperatures and how few returned to France having perished in the Russian winter.
    https://www.edwardtufte.com/tufte/posters
  • @BenWP; Great graphic of Napoleon in Russia, and "The Cognitive Style of Powerpoint" poster on that page is hilarious.
  • Total cluster farce that could have maybe been avoided by agreeing to no Ukraine NATO membership instead we have evil, destruction, loss of life, refuges and we're going to get inflation like we've never seen

    Heard that farmers are going to plant soy crops instead of corn. Soy beans require less amount of expensive fertilizer. Food protein prices will go through the roof. Industrial Input costs are soaring and not letting up, oil energy, transportation shipping costs going up more bigly

    Anyone catch Ian bremmer on Josh Brown podcast? Paraphrasing that people are way underestimating the ramifications of the Russian invasion and knock on effects

    Clown show all around

    Baseball Fan

  • a useful guy in many circumstances

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ian_Bremmer

    inflation like we've never seen

    that will be something
  • See some talk about Bitcoin and rubles here

    Some running to Bitcoin to hide assets, escape the collapse in the ruble, some to make it easier to cross borders as a refugee

    Do remember my post from 2 years ago regarding high grade rubies. Don't be surprised if market for high grade gem stones takes off. Inflation is weakening all currencies in real terms, real threat of Cyber warfare crippling financial network

    What happens if Russia escalates, demands removal of NATO weapons back to old borders etc with threats of nuclear war?

    Many more refugees?

    Like I said then you could shove a million bucks of gem stones into your sock and no one would know

    Crazy

    Baseball Fan
  • At this point, I am saddened almost to tears re: the HUMAN cost. Which of course includes how much you can accomplish with the money you have, running up against inflation, being uprooted, and all the rest. I still maintain, with Charlie Munger, that crypto needs to be outlawed. It is not just unpatriotic. It is a treasonous tool to bypass LEGITIMATE currencies created by REAL, sovereign governments. "Legal Tender." It should be understood as criminal and counterfeit. The governments which are creating crypto-currencies in their own countries are cutting themselves off at the knees. (Marshall Islands, elsewhere.)
  • Hi @Crash, not disagreeing with you, not agreeing, do respect your opinion...candidly not sure of my position on Bitcoin...see blurb cut out of article by Akin Fernandez..."Bitcoin will end the weaponization of Money and financial rails must end" read it and please provide your thoughts??

    Best Regards,

    Baseball Fan



    https://bitcoinmagazine.com/culture/bitcoin-will-end-the-weaponization-of-money

    Bitcoin will end the use of financial rails and money as weapons in geopolitical conflicts. For all civilized people, it is not and cannot be acceptable that a single "side" controls the banking rails (SWIFT) or consumer credit and debit cards (Mastercard, Visa). When one side takes actions to cut off an entire nation, the ordinary people of that nation are the ones who suffer the most, not the “oligarchs,” tyrants and despots. Financial sanctions hurt ordinary people, the vast majority of whom do not have any stake in the system or the nation, or any share or interest in geopolitical conflicts.

    The Canadian government cut off the truckers from financial services, and cut off anyone who supported them. Now in Canada, some people are withdrawing their money from banks and moving it to jurisdictions where the rules are less dangerous to ordinary people who happen to have an opinion that is different from the dictator there. What they should be doing is moving their money into bitcoin, where the only rules are the rules of the network, which everyone knows in advance, not to another jurisdiction with arbitrary rules and fraudulent money.

    In Bitcoin, there is no fat, white-haired oligarch controlling the supply of money. This means there is no one who can unilaterally steal the value of your savings, as the central banks currently do. It means that once you have bitcoin, you know its value in the future. There is no one who can declare that “the supply of bitcoin has now doubled.” This is what happens with the U.S. dollar and all other fiat. Even if there were no confiscation or deplatforming laws in Canada, and “your money” was safe there, the fiat system would still be stealing your stored value from you by design, day by day.
  • "When one side takes actions to cut off an entire nation, the ordinary people of that nation are the ones who suffer the most, not the “oligarchs,” tyrants and despots." - Do you mean like when Russia cuts off Ukraine for no reason?

    "Now in Canada, some people are withdrawing their money from banks and moving it to jurisdictions where the rules are less dangerous to ordinary people who happen to have an opinion that is different from the dictator there." - Huh, somehow I missed that. When exactly did Canada become a dictatorship?

    "It means that once you have bitcoin, you know its value in the future." Seriously?!!! This is laughable at best with insane not far behind. Tell me what the value of bitcoin will be in 2 hours when I go out to get a pitcher of margaritas or another box of ammo for my M-16.
  • edited March 5
    “Huh, somehow I missed that. When exactly did Canada become a dictatorship?”

    @Mark - It’s called alternate reality. You put a headset on or something like that, than you turn some dials, etc. Brings up whatever view of the world you want to believe in.
  • edited March 5
    The notion that Bitcoin isn’t controlled by oligarchs like nations’ currencies are is laughable. It creates a might is right free for all in which whoever owns the most Bitcoin controls the currency. A currency for the wealthy and by the wealthy libertarians who have and seek no regulatory checks, government control or taxation. With national currency in democracies at least the ordinary people, the voters, have some say in that currency’s fate. Everyone’s vote ostensibly counts equally and we can elect officials who want to strengthen the dollar or weaken it. But much like at a corporation where whoever has the most shares has the most say in governance, crypto’s ownership and pricing have already been cornered and controlled by a handful of wealthy individuals, i.e, oligarchs. While oligarchs also run the U.S. today there are at least a few checks, the voting booth being one. Also, if Bitcoin wins, the dollar as the world reserve currency and the U.S. by proxy loses. If the dollar fails because of crypto, you can kiss the rest of your portfolio goodbye.

    In other words, meet the new boss, same as the old boss but now with less regulation: https://suissegold.eu/en/posts/could-a-group-corner-the-bitcoin-market
    Fascinatingly, about 1% of Bitcoin owners own about 70% of all outstanding Bitcoins. This contrasts with about 3% of the global population owning about 70% of global wealth. Interestingly, the difference between Bitcoin ownership and other financial asset concentration is not that much.

    Shifting to the green portion, the top 0.71% of Bitcoin owners own 55% of the cryptocurrency, while the distribution is slightly smaller for owners of other financial assets. The top 0.71% of owners of euro and dollar denominated assets own about 41% of all the wealth.
  • Sometimes I get to a point where the numbers just boggle my mind. At those times, I might as well be a bobblehead doll.

    @Baseball_Fan

    Sorry, the link won't open for me. But I read that excerpt. Assumptions are being made there which I differ with.
    "Bitcoin will end the use of financial rails and money as weapons in geopolitical conflicts."
    Money as a "weapon" is what killed South African Apartheid--- slowly, TOO slowly. But it worked. The same boycott tactic is NOT so successful with regard to the Israeli Occupation of Palestine, because AIPAC is quite successful with their propaganda and because so many MISCONSTRUE what's in their bibles.

    I'd say that a country's own national currency is not so much a weapon, as it is a tool, a standard. An above-board transaction-implement that is universal, belonging not just to SOME. And without controls, you get scumbags planting ransomware on computers that can only be removed by extortion, using... bitcoin.
    ********************************
    "When one side takes actions to cut off an entire nation, the ordinary people of that nation are the ones who suffer the most, not the “oligarchs,” tyrants and despots. Financial sanctions hurt ordinary people, the vast majority of whom do not have any stake in the system or the nation, or any share or interest in geopolitical conflicts."
    But ordinary people DO have a stake. Governments have been busy over the course of several decades, DIVESTING themselves of their proper responsibilities by "farming out" services to the private sector. The result is a lack of accountability, dysfunction, gradual decline in the level of service. Government stops operating like a government...... By the same token, when citizens disconnect themselves from what's happening in the corridors where decisions get made, they shoot themselves in the foot. which is where we are today. It's a vicious circle: people divorce themselves from any sense of obligation and responsibility beyond their own vested interests. Politicians pander to those vested interests. Those whom politicians protect and give advantages will vote for those particular politicians. the Big Picture gets lost in the shuffle. Ethics gets lost in the shuffle. Any sense of the Common Good gets lost in the shuffle. Like it or not, we ARE all connected. It has become too easy to ignore that fact, just within my own lifetime.
  • So, well Mr. Fernandez (guy from BF's post) is having his epiphanies on the greatness of crypto currencies here's another take:

    How are crypto execs reacting to economic sanctions against Russia?
  • Canada as a dictatorship, now, that's genuinely funny
  • Canada as a dictatorship, now, that's genuinely funny

    Ditto.

  • Concur with David. Canada is one of our favorite travel destination where we happily spend our greenback.
  • edited March 6
    With great difficulty I'm holding my tongue in the interests of MFO. Because a very few posters abuse this site to promulgate their own personal "populist" agenda does not release me from my obligation to respect the interests of the common good- a concept obviously alien to those who would impose their contorted version of reality on everyone else. Indeed, their concept of "community" seems to consist of their self-proclaimed "right" to act in any way that happens to strike them as desirable at any given moment.

    It's interesting to consider what kind of a game baseball would be if the only rules were that teams could do whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted, simply because that's what they wanted, and to hell with everyone else.
  • Guys, c'mon, yes, kind of silly the article's comment about Canada...the author was trying to make a point..I wasn't following it closely but wasn't there talk or actual action of freezing bank accounts etc with the trucker protest...that is what I beleive the author was referring to...who decides what is proper, and who decides and has the power to freeze, confiscate, sanction your wealth outside of exisiting norms/laws? FWIW, I am dual citizen, born in Canada.

    To the point of Old Joe's interest of common good, which I completely agree with....does remind me when I moved into my new neighborhood and was talking to a neighbor about the HOA and rational thinking...he told me with a smile, "I believe your thinking is rational as long as it agrees with mine"

    How does it work with Bitcoin though...don't you have to declare and pay taxes on it? Is the question how does the gov't prove it, no 1099 etc, so some are not paying taxes on it? I don't hold any so I don't know, but my CPA did ask me if I held any the other day when prepping taxes.

    Curious as to if the class would be ok with a US Dollar digital currency? I do know many who would not be comfortable with that. I dunno.

    Best,

    Baseball Fan
  • Guys, c'mon, yes, kind of silly the article's comment about Canada...the author was trying to make a point..I wasn't following it closely but wasn't there talk or actual action of freezing bank accounts etc with the trucker protest...that is what I beleive the author was referring to...who decides what is proper, and who decides and has the power to freeze, confiscate, sanction your wealth outside of exisiting norms/laws? FWIW, I am dual citizen, born in Canada.

    To the point of Old Joe's interest of common good, which I completely agree with....does remind me when I moved into my new neighborhood and was talking to a neighbor about the HOA and rational thinking...he told me with a smile, "I believe your thinking is rational as long as it agrees with mine"

    How does it work with Bitcoin though...don't you have to declare and pay taxes on it? Is the question how does the gov't prove it, no 1099 etc, so some are not paying taxes on it? I don't hold any so I don't know, but my CPA did ask me if I held any the other day when prepping taxes.

    Curious as to if the class would be ok with a US Dollar digital currency? I do know many who would not be comfortable with that. I dunno.

    Best,

    Baseball Fan

    * Hello, again, @Baseball_Fan.
    I sense a bit of consternation in your words. Doesn't sound to me like you're evil. You were just offering something. As you can tell, those that replied do not think much of it!

    Canada, eh? I used to go visit every year. Haven't been there since '18. Best friend is still there, in the Kootenays. in a previous lifetime, before one or two big decisions in another direction, I was headed for permanent residency in the Southern Interior of BC, too.

    Yes, some of the Canadian Idiot convoy to Ottawa had their assets, bank accounts frozen. With the Common Good in mind, any gov't has the right to take measures to stop and prevent such silly behavior. Completely justified. Regulations to address and confront the Covid are good and necessary. Those Truckers were having a childish tantrum. It cost the Ottawa police chief his job. Even the PM went into hibernation because he was exposed, or caught the Covid himself. I've had it and survived. (Double vaxed and boosted.)

    What SHOULD be behind such steps by gov't is what has not been explicitized in this thread. I've mentioned it only once, in passing: ethics. What does The Good require? Obviously, individual rights must be protected. But as Mr. Spock asserted more than once: "The needs of the many outweigh the needs (or desires) of the one."

    The Canadian Idiot Trucker convoy is Exhibit A as to why the Covid threat is not substantially behind us yet. I know NURSES who refuse to get vaxed. That's a special kind of stupid. And with ETHICS in mind, how can such nurses be permitted to care for patients, unvaxed? They are exposing the very people they're supposed to be helping to a big risk. The way to reduce that threat ALMOST completely? Vaccination. Duh.

    Bitcoin and the other iterations of crypto are still evil and treasonous. Governments are supposed to serve their people. When they allow such a work-around to live and grow and function, they stop serving their people. LOTS of shit is perfectly legal, yet perfectly UNETHICAL. That's nothing new. Good thing I'm not in charge. Heads would roll.

    Rogers Pass picture, near Golden, B.C.
    image



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