Clinton, Trump and Israel – What Gives?

Clinton, Trump and Israel – What Gives?

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Benjamin Netanyahu, the prime minister of Israel met with both US presidential candidates; Clinton (Democrats) and Trump (Republicans) during his recent visit to New York to attend the UN general assembly meeting. Of course, this is not the first time he meets each of them, but as the presidential race is getting hotter with the approach of the candidates’ debates season, Israel may have felt that wise to reassess each candidate’s Continue reading “Clinton, Trump and Israel – What Gives?”

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Either a Job or a Salary!

Either a Job or a Salary!

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The Kuwaiti public opinion stands firmly against abolishing, or even reducing, the accumulated perks and benefits enjoyed by the citizens. The logic presented is pretty strong and, unless a major catastrophe befalls the country, it is difficult to counter. Additionally, the masses have made it vocally clear, that they do not see a catastrophe in the horizon – even though one may be slowly brewing. Continue reading “Either a Job or a Salary!”

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ARE ALL INTERNATIONAL BANKS HONEST?

ARE ALL INTERNATIONAL BANKS HONEST?

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We trust banks with our life savings and our hard earned money. We trust their advice and buy their bonds and shares. We appoint them as trustees and escrow holders of our funds. We borrow from them and mortgage our homes and assets to them. More recently, we trust their investment advice and let them manage our portfolios. We respect bankers and listen, with awe, to their opinions about the economy and the world. But, do they deserve all this trust? Continue reading “ARE ALL INTERNATIONAL BANKS HONEST?”

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An Oil Freeze? So What?

An Oil Freeze? So What?

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The oil business was abuzz last week with the rumors of a possible agreement between Russia and Saudi on freezing their production at their present levels. Consequently, prices began to creep upwards, especially after both the Saudi and Russian oil ministers made optimistic noises during the recent G20 meeting. They said that a semi-permanent committee would be established to seek ways of cooperation on oil and indicated indirectly that some sort of freeze would be “good”, and “maybe” likely. That was sufficient to trigger oil traders and turn them bullish – for a while at least before they came back to their senses. Continue reading “An Oil Freeze? So What?”

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THE NEW SYRIAN CEASEFIRE: A QUICK RAW ANALYSIS

THE NEW SYRIAN CEASEFIRE: A QUICK RAW ANALYSIS

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LIKELY SYRIAN STATUS QUO:

• The Syrian government is exhausted. It has very little room to maneuver and hence, is unable to contradict whatever Russia and the US decide.
• It may still have the support of the majority of the Syrian population, but much of this support is a result of the majority of Syrians refusing the alternative i.e. a severe Islamist rule. Continue reading “THE NEW SYRIAN CEASEFIRE: A QUICK RAW ANALYSIS”

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Happiness and Economics

Happiness and Economics

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The king of Bhutan proposed in 1972 a new concept for measuring economic performance. He called it the “General National Happiness” GNH, as opposed to the generally acceptable economic concept of Gross National Product GNP.

Bhutan is a small nation near the Himalayas, surrounded by China, India and Bangladesh. It population is about one million, and its area is 14,800 square kilometers. Its GNP is US$ 2.2 Billion, and its per capita income is US$ 2,830. It is similar to the smaller Countries in the Gulf, but is poor. Continue reading “Happiness and Economics”

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TIMBUKTU ELEPHANTS

TIMBUKTU ELEPHANTS

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The august, International Criminal Court at The Hague, recently began the trial of a leader of the Islamist Militants (Ansaru Din), who took over Timbuktu, Mali in 2012. The Islamist ruled the city for ten months and installed strict Sharia law and, in the process, killed residents and destroyed some old buildings and ancient manuscripts.

It was an open and shut case, as the leader on trial, who is also an Islamic scholar, immediately admitted to the charges, said he was really sorry and asked for forgiveness! That was pretty Catholic of him, and probably, was a shrewd defense strategy, with the cards well stacked against him. Continue reading “TIMBUKTU ELEPHANTS”

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ADDENDUM TO: Yesterday’s article on Electricity Rate Increases

ADDENDUM TO: Yesterday’s article on Electricity Rate Increases

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Yesterday’s article on electricity (The Petrol Price Hike is Peanuts) created quite a stir, and probably generated plenty of questions. And on the advice of our friend, Mr. Abdul Rahman Al Houty, we herewith add some more information to add clarity to a difficult subject. (However, this does not eliminate the need for a full-fledged in-depth study of the issue).

NOTE: Like all averages, these are very rough indications. Each is based on separate assumptions that may or may not be relevant to our case.
House size, family size, climate, etc. are based on other countries and societies which are different to the Kuwait and the Gulf. Continue reading “ADDENDUM TO: Yesterday’s article on Electricity Rate Increases”

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The Petrol Price Hike is Peanuts

The Petrol Price Hike is Peanuts

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The recent petrol price hike in Kuwait has, no doubt, been irksome, but not too painful to justify the huge public outcry that has erupted. The real pain is just around the corner, as electricity rate increases are stewing in the pot and will soon be done. The public should save their real outcry for that surprise.

The increase of electricity rates is frightening because it is likely to have a huge impact on family budgets. Especially, if we accept the assumption that the production cost of one Kilowatt of electricity is 40 Fils, which is twenty times the 2 Fils rate that households presently pay, then it would be a disaster if rates are increased to cover production costs. A family paying KD 600 per year would suddenly be billed KD 12,000! And those paying KD 1,500 would face a KD 36,000 invoice. Continue reading “The Petrol Price Hike is Peanuts”

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The Arab Refugees are an Arab Responsibility

The Arab Refugees are an Arab Responsibility

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“Some Hungarians are calling to place pig heads along their border to deter Muslim refugees from entering the country!”

The numbers of Arab refuges have increased dramatically over the past few years. And so have the horror stories of the reasons for their flight, the perils of their treks, and the difficulties they face in entering Europe and thereafter remaining there. Continue reading “The Arab Refugees are an Arab Responsibility”

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