ET Live – 1.15.2019

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  1. Narrative ONE (Digital Economy) - “Discussions about globalization—and its costs and benefits—often focus on physical goods such as steel beams, cars, or soybeans. The reality is that the integration of economies is increasingly a digital one that happens in invisible daily bursts—like the sessions in which far-flung armies of Fortnite players face off against each other on an imaginary island. ‘The digital economy is everywhere, and much of it is international without our even knowing it,’ says Anupam Chander, a law professor and expert on digital trade at Georgetown University. If we don’t always fully appreciate the scale of what’s going on, it’s because much of digital trade is not being captured in official statistics, says Susan Lund of the McKinsey Global Institute, the consultant’s in-house think tank. In a report, Lund and her co-authors documented an explosion in global data flows that they argued generated $2.8 trillion in economic output in 2014 alone and was doing more to benefit the world economy than the stalling international trade in physical goods.” • Maybe this is why the elites are letting women take over defense industry, the Pentagon, and chores like torture; the real action is digital. Perhaps a global warming play as well? BOTTOM LINE - The online game Fortnite is actually a kind of global economic exchange, but governments are unprepared to account for digital goods as imports or exports.

    Narrative TWO (BS New GRN Deal, FDR Reincarnated Kinda) - I’ve been disappointed by the cheerleading over the Green New Deal. Its claim is that if we mobilize enough resources, we can convert to a renewable-energy-based economy and arrest the rise in greenhouse gases soon enough to prevent the worst global warming outcomes.
    That might have worked if we had started 20 years ago. But as they say in Maine, “You can’t get there from here.” And Just in…Apparently, the FBI, and not the CIA, are the real government…the coup is ongoing.

    ***PS…Maybe we should all realize how our “Attachments” drive our emotional state…We got our Civil War Statues, We got our Me Too, We got our Anthem/Take-a-Knee, We got our Truthiness Narrative and now We got our “McJesus in Israel…Oh my! What are we going to do now! LMFAO!!! Zen Moment…The story of the Fukawi Indian Tribe comes to mind…

  2. Ben & Rusty,
    An insightful webcast, thank you. The discussion helps my understanding of the concepts you introduce in your (well-written) articles.

    My thoughts on the stock market becoming (or already become?) a political utility;

    I think for Individual Investors (like my current self) who believe in some form of (probably drawn out) reversion to the mean valuation measures, desultory returns for many years are likely to occur. Especially if we really have moved to the “Competitive game” from the “Collaborative game” , coupled with massive debt and interference with free markets and capitalism, lower long term growth and long term earnings are likely to occur
    For Individuals then , we should play Defense first. The very low end of regular risk assets in one’s acceptable range. Perhaps flavored with a small % in “Anti-Fragile” like assets, preferably ones without expensive decay features.

    For Pros (like my former self) who are forced to play the game as it has depressingly become, because you have career risk in an annually measured world, your new “Narrative finder” technology seems like it has the potential as a legit tool. Bravo.

    As a “Paid-Up” regular subscriber, I am hopeful you will periodically share some of the broader insights you gain from your marvelous new tool.

    And keep up the great work !

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