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|Posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:08 PM||comments ()|
Today the markets looked so mixed, I decided to take a stroll to the town and popped in at a bookstore.
There is something a bit forlorn about the carpets, and so many shelves looking emptied during open times gave me the impression that they are either going to lay on the decorations for Christmas or close down. I hope not the latter, for there were half a dozen people browsing, in the 50 plus group, at one glance, so the type of people who enjoy books and likely have the spending power also.
I couldn't see any books on technical analysis, nor on social media. Perhaps that's what the empty shelves are for.
My eye fell on a seductive book, The Mystery Method...a glance through it made me cheer up.
It says use women's perfume instead of aftershave! and the man seen with women at a bar finds more attraction, just like the house just sold or the girl just engaged gets envious glances.
The writer of that work on etiquette for the lothario or would be Casanova must know a few things, as he has even coached people to sit at a pub with him and directed them to go and chat up the woman of their fancy. Certainly some willpower is necessary to go and chat the gorgeous woman no-one else seems to go up to. That's what the Mystery Method teaches. It's somewhat like giving someone the courage to trade.
The book gives fresh amusement, such as seems to be absent in some of the oh-so-direct books that people probably buy in a hurry then wish they hadn't. But this book liked like a nice cuddly cat.
|Posted on November 10, 2013 at 11:40 AM||comments ()|
Remembrance Day at the Ilford chapel of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was marked by the Bishop and congregation paying respects to the memories of the heroes and heroines who gave their lives in the quest for freedom from tyranny and injustice.
How great a freedom we enjoy today as citizens of England is all due to the heroes and heroines who laid down their lives, as well as those valiant men and women who helped negotiate peace and brought forward this day into being.
Brother Jeremy Boyden : "We remember all those who made the ultimate sacrifice, like our Saviour, and we mark this day when peace was first agreed between all nations, on 11th November 1918".
The President's wife Sister Saltzman read a poem about Flanders Fields.
The Bishop's son, Brother Michael Onaolapo Jnr : "Greater love hath no man then He who gave up His own life so that others may live."
Sister Shannon Pickering, who was baptised in the Ilford ward two weeks ago, spoke a few words about the loving atmosphere that prevails in this land, thanks to people like her gransparents who did their bit during the war.
Sister Joanne Boyden read a famous poem, starting The glory shines upon my tears....She read the bit about hopes and expectations and stars and then became very emotional. (I asked her later; she explained that her Mother lost two brothers in the war). (For the Fallen, Robert Laurence Binyon).
Brother Michael Lighten paid tribute to the great example of Captain Noel Godfrey Chavasse, recounting events in the Captain's life in the Royal Army Medical Corp, who had to combine civilian with military duties at the front, where he saw within a few hours 189 casualties out of 600. Captain Chavasse worked behind enemy lines for four hours, just 500 yards to safety. On another occasion just 25 yards from enemy trenches. Altogether, Captain Chavasse saved the lives of approximately 20,000 men.
On another occasion, he worked with protection against an attack of mustard gas.
Noel picked up his torch, and rose up in his time, working against impossible conditions of mud, blood and water. Captain Chavasse was decoated with a rare second Victoria Cross. Such men are rare indeed, and we all recall his courage with awe and celebration.
"For their tomorrows, we give our today" John Maxwell Edmonds. That was the spirit of the unknown solider, great soul who's memory we salute today.
We stood and paid our respects to the memories of the men and women who have won the freedoms that have greatly contributed to the enjoyment of peace and peaceful life that England enjoys today.
Bishop Onaolapo made these closing remarks : "We are here because of the sacrifices the soldiers, male and female, have made for us. That is why the great atmosphere of stability and safety, friendliness and love prevails in this nation. I am sure this country will go from strength to strength because of that, and I am proud to be a citizen of this great country of ours."
I believe this sums up the congregations sentiments on this day, when we salute those whose lives were lost, as well as those who brought about peace.
May God's blessings be upon all.
(written by Duru-darshan
LDS Ilford ward)
|Posted on November 5, 2013 at 7:26 AM||comments ()|
It appears the Obamacare rollout has had teething problems, especially with the website interfacing.
Perhaps they should have stuck with their initial design, just to guage peoples interest without putting them off by asking comprehensive personal details. It's like me asking you for your personal details before allowing you to read my blog.
Good news comes from Professor Gruber's analysis of the figures that would need or benefit from Obamacare, and provided provisions have been pencilled in for the expenditure, the launch should be quite successful, after the rationale is accepted by Joe Public.
It seems that about 14 percent of the U.S. population would need Obamacare, the other 86 percent are adequately catered for.
Of the 14 percent, Obamacare seeks to enlist the young working people, who don't have any kind of health care provision. Once these people start to sign up in numbers, I presume the premium costs would start to come down. It has to be attractive for people to sign up, not a cumbersome figure that people would be unwilling to pay and indeed may not see the immediate necessity to pay if they are currently in good health. Everything being equal, most people would expect to continue to enjoy good health, and it seems a foolish waste of money to buy an insurance policy for health to most young people. However, good health carries no guarantees into the future, and it is against this that people need to have cover, seeing how people's lives are sometimes marred by ill-health and their careers written off. It is against this realistic look that young people need to consider taking up a policy to safeguard their future.
(In Britain it is straightforward enough. Everyone is levied what is termed National Insurance, which is a fixed percentrage of one's income, and universally everyone gets medical cover under the National Health Service. Some out of personal preference for quicker or better service decide to take out additional policies with private health insurance companies. Side by side, the NHS and organisations such as the not-for-profit BUPA and Simply Health serve the population very well, in practical terms.)
If lot more people show an interest in what Obamacare offers, presumably the insurance premiums would start to come down and encourage more and more people to sign on, so it would actually deliver what would become affordable health care.
As the issue is debated and considered, I guess it will gather acceptance, if not straight away then over a number of years. Good health brings great benefits in enjoyment of life and work, creating a happy atmosphere and bringing prosperity to all, a welcome place.
|Posted on October 29, 2013 at 7:08 AM||comments ()|
Following in the math of the sequestration cuts, followed by uncertainity about the U.S. Debt Ceiling raise, and the unwanted shutdown and furloughs, it seems apparent that confidence has taken a bit of a knock, especially with regards to the United States economy, but obviously timely positive action would restore that.
The news that Ms Janet Yellen was nominated by Mr Obama to the chair of the Federal Reserve was actually happy news to the markets, welcoming this dove of the financial system, assured that the punchbowl would be replenished and the taper would be quite some time away now.
Once that nomination is confirmed by one and all, that would send the right signal and boost the confidence that the economy needs right now, in view of the temporary fix of the nation's capacity to continue funding itself until only 15th January 2014.
Around that time Chairman Ben Bernanke steps down, and willing bi-partisan co-operation to extend
the reserve balance capacity and support Ms Yellen in her post will ensure great and much needed stability to the world financial system, and not only to that of the United States.
The housing numbers yesterday were obviously disappointing, indicating a shake in the confidence of house buyers. That is but natural, in view of the uncertainity created by the last-moment and then only such a short temporary fix of the situation.
When I was in California and Las Vegas last year, October and November, I met lots of people and heard their stories about how hopeful they are, and how they are happy working hard, to buy their first house and know things are okay with their economy. These were people who are taxi-drivers, concierges, receptionists, cleaners, waiters, waiteresses, a scientist working for an oil major, people who had made America their home, and who were sharing in the American dream.
It can obviously help the well-being of the nation if normal lending practices continue, where the individual man or woman and families are encouraged to buy their own houses, with the confidence in the system that things will continue positively, so they can believe in the virtue of borrowing and investing for the future.
The oil price on both sides of the Atlantic is so high, and hopefully needs to be around the $85 mark to encourage normal growth in the economies outside the G20 nations. Their depleted reserves and devalued currencies vis a vis the major currencies don't give them a chance. A dose of kindness now would greatly assist growth throughout the world, which would bring great mutual benefits to all nations. When we eat the food that we can so easily buy which has been exported from some country, we must spare a thought for the people there, who may not be able to afford such items in their own countries. When I wear my beautifully stitched shirt, my heart sends blessings to the factory workers in Bangladesh. It was heartening news to hear of American companies giving them continued support and helping them make the textile industry safe for workers.
With such friendship and trade between nations, each cog will help turn the small wheel which in turn will drive the greater wheel, and the path to continued economic Recovery, and yes, ultimately a growing Prosperity for all, shall continue. For that I pray.
|Posted on October 28, 2013 at 8:34 AM||comments ()|
It has taken all of five years for the world economies to be restored to semblance of normality from the dark days of 2008.
Remember those days when the interest rates were quite high in the advanced economies, anything from 4 to 7 percent - and that for the benchmark European Central Bank, Federal Reserve and Bank of England rate.
The crisis created by the collapse of Lehmann Bros sent shockwaves throughout the financial system worldwide, with stockmarkets tumbling, loss of confidence in trade, fall in house prices, and a mood of pessimism gripped the world.
At the vortex of the crisis, when Oil price reached $147 per barrel, according to OPEC AND European Union figures, about $250 billion additional bills were imposed on the European Union's oil expenditure, and what a terrible crisis it created, making transportation and manufacturing unviable in many countries, e.g. Portugal, Spain, Greece, the extra drain sucking the life-force out of the system.
At the peak of the crisis, people who were earlier working in the textile industry were suddenly without work, and wondering how they would find their cod-and-chips. Enterprising young people and old were trying their hand at the e-commerce economy, and finding lot of work but little revenue. The Prime Minister of a sovereign nation which was so prosperous not so long ago was visiting the heads of state of various nations, asking for help. The social security systems were severally stretched, the tax revenues not corresponding to the new outflows. The interest on the bonds became quite high, to attract investors. Talented people from universities were not able to find opportunities to make a living.
Demand on housing was as high as ever, but people didn't have money to rent, nor were banks willing to extend mortgages. Indeed, banks and loan corporations were suddenly unviable, after the property price plunge and bankruptcies of many individuals.
Today, comparatively, there has been a return of confidence. Things are getting better. Spain, Portugal and Greece have seen their bonds become more attractive to international investors.
But the worst is hardly behind us, yet the oil price remains so high. The pending closure of the Grangemouth Refinery is an indicator of the havoc the oil price plays with the balance sheet of such businesses. A business that was viable up until recently today stands in need of £300 million, with that it would support 800 jobs until trade is more favourable. This may be a microcosmic illustration of what could be in store for the OPEC nations, unless they decide to reduce the oil price to a level that is affordable to the rest of the world, and would give the OPEC nations an on-going stable income on a long-term basis into the future, and allow the world to breathe, and help sustain Recovery.
It took two-and-a-half years after the high oil price knocked the economies for six for a return to some kind of normal business activity. Common sense tells me that the high price today will probably hamper growth for about a year-and-a-half, and it is already restricting growth and causing hardships in many places, e.g. Yemn, Kenya, India, and almost all the nations outside the G20.
I WOULD RESPECTFULLY SUGGEST THAT THE OIL PRICE NEEDS TO BE BELOW $85 A BARREL.
That would help the hard-pressed developing nations meet their bills from their depleted reserves or devalued currencies, and enabling continuation of trade with the U.S., China, European Union, Israel and indeed OPEC, which would create a dynamic of mutual co-operation and support that may help all nations thrive and develop all their potential. That is the missing piece of the jigsaw in the picture of a continuation of the worldwide economic Recovery.
All the listening hearts of the world know what I am saying, and those who sit in positions of influence will do what is necessary, for that I pray.
|Posted on October 26, 2013 at 12:27 PM||comments ()|
It seems a frequent occurrence, the coming of typhoons and cyclones that seem to hit the Eastern board of India every year, often hitting Odisha the hardest, together with Andhra Pradesh as well as Bengal.
This October, cyclone Phailin landed at Gopalpur in Odisha with a core speed of 200 Kilometres per hour, reducing to matchsticks the flimsy dwellings in the low-lying areas, flooding vast majority of farmland and dwellings. Fallen trees and power lines added to the problems in travelling. Thanfully early warming of the oncoming SuperCyclone enabled the local municipal authorities put into action evacuation plans, together with assistance from the Army and Navy, which were on standby, and so only a tiny number of people lost their lives this time, compared to the 10,000 last time.
Nearly a million people had been evacuated, with a timely and well-ordinated effort by the authorities. Social media must have helped, emphasising the dangers of flooding and the ferocity of the winds, and, most important, how much time they had to get out of harm's way. Villagers became convinced of the seriousness and left for the safety of higher areas and strong public dwellings, travelling at the last minute by buses laid on by the local councils. Thankfully, so many people saved their lives by not ignoring the messages.
About 100,000 people were similarly affected in Andhra Pradesh also.
Odisha Chief Minister has requested the government in Delhi to provide approximately a billion pounds over and above the 572 million pounds which would be available in the state disaster response fund, such has been the devastation left by Cyclone Phailin.
The government and local authorities are stretched trying to provide food, shelter and rehabilitation for the million plus people affected in the last fortnight.
As if that was not bad enough, another cyclone has hit the same region today, killing 29 and leaving another 85,000 marooned. The government and the local communities have a huge task of rebuilding and rehabilitating nearly 1.3 million people in Eastern states, some of the poorest and least developed in India. It would be a great blessing for the people if this encourages the construction of alternative housing in such areas.
In the meantime, again I pray for the safety and well-being of the people of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh and Bengal.
Respectfully Invoking our Saviour's prayer I intone :"Winds, be thee still".
May God's love and care be with the people there.
(written by Duru-darshan
Melchizedek priest at Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Ilford)
Good news heard today, 9th November 2013.
Indian Prime Minister has announced allocation of funds of 1,000 Crores each for Odisha and Andhra Pradesh. (approx. 1 Billion Pounds each).
|Posted on October 23, 2013 at 3:29 PM||comments ()|
Recently I've had a lot of visitors to my blog and website from Putian as well as Beijing.
I note the Indian Premier Dr Manmohan Singh has been to visit Beijing soon after his trip to Moscow, and
things are looking good for co-operation on peacefully observing each other's shared borders as well as increase in friendly relations and trade.
My personal hope is to become nominated by the Congress Party of India (UPA) as the Prime Ministerial candidate for May 2014. Should my wish be fulfilled with approval of Rahul and Mrs Sonia Gandhi, I would be thrilled and would go to India straight away to start campaigning in earnest.
I have a vision for India as a good neighbour to China, Russia, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and the whole region, as well as to unlock the huge potential that there obviously is for growth of infrastructure such as roads, bridges, dams, power generation, further irrigation, as well as housing, hospitals, schools, universities, and so on, which would utilise the resources and cater to the public, as well as use the skills and expertise internationally in building up this great nation. I have lived in London the last 41 years, and see the n-th degree developments of this nation (United Kingdom) as something India could well try to aim for. I imagine that with India's resources both of the peoples' savings and growing expectations of improvements in living standards, it would fit hand-in-glove.
It is regrettable that there have been skirmishes on the international border with Pakistan, especially just after Dr Manmohan Singh-ji had constructive talks with Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif in New York recently. Mr Nawaz Sharif has a great reputation as a man of his people and a positive personality, who would only wish the best for his people and continuation of peaceful co-existence with India. The Indian PM has offered bilateral talks on this issue to find a resolution, and I sincerely hope common-sense and peace prevails once again.
I hope my readers will be able to make an accurate picture of what I would like to do, and I would welcome your comments on this matter.
In the meantime, I wish you a peaceful and happy evening.