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The International Investor

July, 2016 Archives

Watch Japan

By Benjamin J. Butler

 

Seoul, South Korea

 

I am still in Seoul, wondering where to go next in fact. The world is changing quickly. Trends that we have been discerning for some time are accelerating and new ones are emerging. I had a conversation with one of the organizers of California’s Burning Man this week who said that virtual reality just hit an inflection point and funding has accelerated. (Readers might remember we forecast this in a year-end edition of Dow Theory.)

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Future Shock

by Benjamin J. Butler

 

Less than a month ago the great futurist Alvin Toffler passed away. The phenomena of Future Shock, which he wrote about, is very much accelerating now. 

  

Simply speaking, complex systems can exist in one of three states: stable, oscillating and chaos. The social system that I shall call “humanity” has evidently passed some tipping point into chaos. Arguably this is being driven by greater numbers of people, greater connections between people (urbanization and the internet age) and rising speeds.

 

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Are We Just Wrong?

By Benjamin J. Butler

 

Kensington, London

 

I have been meeting people in London this week, trying to gauge the pulse of the city and, as usual, see what the read through is for the rest of the global economy and financial markets. Yesterday I saw the new Muslim Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, wandering about London, having his photos taken with enthusiastic school children. The weather has been fantastic, and I even managed to do some documentary interviews. Mr. Khan was in the news today requesting more autonomy for London going forward. My view is that cities around the world get more and more autonomy going forward. But more on that later.

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Italian Prime Minister Says the Emperor Has No Clothes

By Benjamin Butler

 

Bath Spa, Somerset, United Kingdom

 

I am visiting some of England’s ancient historic sites with my family. A couple of days ago we were at Glastonbury, the site of the oldest Christian Abbey (King Arthur is apparently buried here), made famous now by the UK equivalent of Woodstock, the Glastonbury Festival. It is now famous as a spiritual epicenter for the New Age crowd. Very interestingly, their one last bank closed down recently. Is this an ominous sign of what's to come?

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