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    Outside the Box, February 2012

    A Primer on the Euro Breakup

    February 28, 2012

    It's one thing to say that peripheral eurozone countries are better off leaving the euro, but how, exactly? And how severe can we expect the consequences to be, not only for those nations but also for the entire eurozone – and for the rest of us, worldwide? To minimize fallout from the event(s), it would be helpful to have a solid foundation, based on an historical understanding of similar events, on which we could build a reasonable set of expectations.

    In the following piece, Jonathan...

    The State of the World: A Framework

    February 23, 2012

    Companies issue state of the enterprise addresses, and presidents issue state of the union addresses ... but you've got to be pretty confident to address the state of the world. Luckily for us, Stratfor founder and CEO George Friedman is just that confident – and it's well-deserved.

    George is the expert in geopolitics, and his company is the best source out there for geopolitical analysis. Thus, his recent article, "The State of the World: A Framework," is well worth a thorough read. It...

    Ben Graham’s Curse on Gold

    February 20, 2012

    This week we have a shorter Outside the Box, from my friend David Galland at Casey Research, with an interesting insight into why gold can be considered as a poor investment by some rather influential investors (like Warren Buffett) while others may see it as the core of a diversified portfolio. As usual when I use someone's material for an OTB, I include a link at the end, if you want to look deeper. The rather large team at Casey Research specializes in gold, natural...

    Face the Music

    February 14, 2012

    No one does it like Kate Welling – we're talking financial-world interviews here, "interrogatory journalism," as Kate would put it – and her interview of Dr. Lacy Hunt, which you're about to read, is in my opinion one of the best she's ever done, and the best I've seen with Lacy.

    Kate's interviews, which she publishes in welling@weeden, normally get seen only by the institutional investors and other market pros who are her clients; but she has kindly allowed me to share this one, in which...

    American Gridlock, Part 2

    February 7, 2012

    Today we dive into Part 2 of Woody Brock’s notes from his new book, American Gridlock (www.amazon.com/gridlock). He looks at what we can do in the future to prevent another crisis like we had in 2008, why we need to change, how we bargain with China (will be very controversial, in China at least!), what capitalism really is, and then he addresses the thorny issue of what it means to distribute wealth fairly. What can be said to those concerned with the top 1% of the population owning a grossly...