Good morning

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The headlines:

  1. Changes in the Chinese monarchy secretariat.

    Link: ahead of a fabled change in leadership.

    Someone replaced someone that we don’t know and probably won’t (Li Zhanshu replaced Ling Jihua who was an ally of Hu Jintao). This is ahead of a congress when Xi Jinping is meant to take over from Hu Jintao (same Hu), and Li Keqiang (different Li) is meant to takeover from Wen Jiabao.

    But we keeping reading about this change in the Chinese leadership that’s always happening “later this year”. My question is: WHEN? There is never mention of a date.

    I realise that this is pure laziness, because I could always do a few google searches and come up with an answer. But I’d like to see it on Bloomberg rather than a random blog. You know – to avoid the awkward issues of mandarin translation and “can the blogger really speak mandarin if there are chinese-taking-over-the-world slurs all over the page”.

    UPDATE: the chinese are yet to announce the date. However, 2,270 delegates will be attending. That they’ve announced.

  2. Obama touts a financial law.

    Link: I’ll confess that I’m still not sure what the headline is saying.

    Obama seems to be playing a very fine party line of not directly criticising Wall Street – just criticising Mitt Romney’s approach to Wall Street. And, at the same time, trying to “aggressively sell” (= “tout”) his new financial regulations law (the “Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act”). It’s not really news so much as an update.

    A Canadian farmer makes a very interesting (but very long) comment at the bottom of the article encouraging the Americans to hold on because he did. Inspiring. If a little patronising.

  3. Hollywood throws its celebrity weight behind Obama.

    Link: it’s all about where George Clooney stands on the issues.

    Is anyone else concerned that the majority of America’s voting public will vote for Obama just because he has a George endorsement?

  4. South African prosecutors drop case against miners.

    Link: the murder charges.

    The recent continuation of the South Africa Lonmin Marikana mine saga has been the charging of the 270 striking miners for the murder of their 34 fellow workers (the ones that were shot massacred by the police).

    The charge was under the “common purpose” law, which makes a group of people present responsible when the conditions created by their protest/action leads to death/something illegal.

    Frankly, I see both sides of this issue. And for all the talk that this was an “apartheid-era” law, why should it not still apply? The crowd gets violent and needs to be dispersed, leading to deaths. Who is ultimately responsible?

    That said, I would probably want to charge the union reps that provoked the riot by pushing for political dominance.

  5. Fed hints at stimulus.

    Link: doesn’t it just.

    Instead of just having a strategy of buying a set amount of bonds, the Fed seems to be moving toward an open-ended strategy of bond repurchases, allowing the Fed to put as much or as little liquidity into the market as and when the Fed deems appropriate.

    This sounds like the type of policy that should make the rest of the World want to replace the dollar as the global currency of reserve.


  6. The new Euro bank notes.

    Link: involve a Greek myth.

    The security measures on the new euro bank notes are rumoured to replace the current architectural watermarks* with Europa, the abducted Phoenician princess of Greek myth.

    Now I’m not sure whether this is a play on Greek myth**, the fact that there’s a princess that got abducted***, or just a general oversight.

    But I like it.

    *still not sure why the predominant theme on the first bank notes of Europe, with all her history, was “bridges”. I mean, honestly.

    **as in “Greek statistics”. Or “the monetary union dream without fiscal union”.

    ***default by the sovereign?

That’s all for now.

Have a good day.