Category Archives: Status Quo

Free choice means mixed results

If in a certain sector of society free choices are severely curtailed, then many people will tend to forget the fact that free choice comes at a price. In such a case, they may well react with shock when witnessing the consequences of bad choices. Why? For the simple and understandable reason that they have little experience with the upside offered by good ones. Continue reading

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Capital controls in Italy not worth reporting

On February 13th Il Sole reported that Italian banks had been required by the government to withhold 20% of all incoming wire transfers to personal accounts, the so-called “ritenuta fiscale”. The banks would get to keep the loot until July … Continue reading

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E-Currency Trading in China – Addendum

According to the self-reported volumes, today huobi.com reported a volume of 186,000 bitcoins traded – close to 1 billion RMB. #2 worldwide was OKCoin with about 46,000. While impossible to verify, given the actual market liquidity and rapid movement, there … Continue reading

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E-Currency Trading in China

Chinese financial markets don’t typically get a lot of press in the English-speaking world, with the occasional exception of some finger wagging about the lack of proper government controls over what goes on, or the occasional reference to a “shadow … Continue reading

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Why Street Vendors Matter

Street vendors are part of the fabric of Chinese life, and there is no indication that this is going to change. For consumers, they substantially enhance quality of life. For the street vendors themselves, it represents both their livelihood and independence. Easy access to self-employment (in the sense of a 个体户), i.e. the ability to freely sell, trade and provide one’s services, is a basic prerequisite for a functioning free market. Continue reading

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What Makes A Government Legitimate?

Eric X. Li asks: What makes a government legitimate? “93% of China’s generation-Y are optimistic about their country’s future! If this is not legitimacy, I’m not sure what is.” In fact, according to the Pew poll, Chinese have more confidence in their leaders and future than any other country surveyed. Continue reading

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Living under the terrorist state

While there is probably no state whose inhabitants are never subject to terrorist raids, the type of terrorism which has become commonplace in the US seems quite exceptional. Is this perhaps a symptom of the fact that the feudalistic profit-sharing … Continue reading

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