Thursday, October 2, 2008

Double-edged swords

The world today seems full of swords that can fall both ways (which can even apply to flying pigs). We have, for instance, the impending bail-out vote in Washington that, we're told, is the only way to avoid impending financial catastrophe/armageddon/Pearl Harbour (you name it - some expert has said it). And yet the other side of that sharp blade is the undoubted enormous risk that the bail-out will chew away at the value of the US dollar, thus eroding the economy that everyone is so desperate to save.
My local newspaper reminds me today of fund manager Peter Schiff and how he's been predicting this state of affairs for a very long time. Back in 2006 he appeared on the Fox News Bulls and Bears show and was jeered at by other panellists when he said that America's economy was heading for collapse. You can find that clip at
That two-year-old show reveals the sword-aspect of Youtube as well. Every foolish word every politican/celebrity/expert ever says will be there online for decades to come. While Youtube can bestow fame, it can open you to endless ridicule as well.
Or endless kudos, as it turns out, in the Schiff case.
Even harmless imagery can carry potential for differing interpretation these days.
Look at the pig pictures above. The fat and smiling pig (think piggy banks and childish happiness at the jingle of coins therein) is the current 'face' of the Bank of New Zealand - happily smiling beneath buoyant balloons of
prosperity. The other pink pig is a very different beast. He cowers on the cover of Peter Shiff's book, with only a frail umbrella sheltering him from the lightning storm overhead. The book's jolly title is Crash Proof: How to Profit from the Coming Economic Collapse.
It was published a year ago.
Clever Mr Schiff.

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