Size of British Army = 73,000. Number of employees at UK, HM Revenue & Customs = 76,890. (Just worked that out myself, so you read this here first!).
I should possibly be more of a Pollyanna presently, but I just have an unhealthy tendency to think about the opposite of conventional wisdom. Case in point is Covid-19. It’s over right? Finished. Finito. Probably. But cases are still significant all over the world. This includes the US and the UK and while the overall trend is undoubtedly downward, but you should know by now what I think about trends when it comes to predicting the future. Bit useless.
I might also add that in China the situation is a bit dystopic. The natives are getting restless (can you still say that?). Putting aside global supply chain disruption and the possibility of a significant global economic downturn (caused as much by worker absences than by covid-per se) there’s the whole Russia/Ukraine situation (which appears to have accidently created a united Europe and a warp-speed green energy revolution – who saw that coming?)
But my main worry currently is that there’s a remote possibility that the virus might significantly mutate again (and again). I must say I was relaxed about this until a virology Professor pointed out to me that the ever-weaker strain theory is just that, a theory. There is no proof of this being the case (note to self: stop talking to virology Professors). The bottom line is that IF a seriously nasty mutation occurs, we may have to start all over with vaccines and lockdowns, although I very much doubt whether there’s much appetite for the latter.
And China. I’ve always talked about China being much more fragile than many people imagine. They have a significant demographic imbalance in terms of the number of young men in their population.
If China has economic growth in high single digits or teens and these men have jobs, apartments and what have you, then all is fine.
Dream of getting rich, but just don’t criticise the ruling party.
But if an economic slowdown occurs (caused either by internal issues or, more likely, external factors – remember China is still currently beholden economically to external demand – then these young men might get mightily pissed-off.
T2. (You’ll have to work out what T2 means for yourselves. Suffice to say that if I spelt it out, this post might piss certain people off).
Putting aside the imapct of China’s lockdowns on global supply chains and indeed China’s own econoimy, what is China up to? Clearly Xi’s zero Covid-19 policy is doomed to fail, but is that all that’s going on? Is there something (a nasty new variant perhaps?) that they are keeping quiet about in just the same way that they kept news of the first outbreak quiet?
Let’s hope not…
Less than 30% you say? Yeah I know, because I have better things to be doing that having pointless meetings or trying to make Microsoft Teams work. Also, at the moment , I do stuff you don’t know about. Also Bill, you might remember this! (Bill Gates and Warren Buffet video)
I find it fascinating that when it comes to Covid-19, we’ve swung from being afraid to step outside to wild abandon. Not a mask to be seen anywhere. All rules dropped. But it hasn’t gone away.
People are still catching Covid and long Covid is real, People are also still being admitted to hospital and still dying in not totally insignificant numbers. It’s probably fine, these people were sick already, but globally cases are also significant (see North Korea).
It’s conceivable that a nasty variant could still emerge (I was talking with a Prof. of virology at Cambridge a month or two ago and she said that while new variants are thought to be ever weaker, that’s a theory with no proof.
In August 2021, student loans in the US surpassed credit cards as the nation’s single largest source of debt, edging ever closer to $1 trillion. Weak signal?
“Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes.”
– William Gibson
Maybe it’s me, but I don’t understand this, especially the axes. It’s from Oltmans van Niekerk, a global research and innovation firm in the Netherlands.
Currently doing a map of (for) Cambridge and bumped in to this. It’s rather old hence the fuzzy image.
Coming next month…