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Comment Re:Brazil (Score 1) 999

Public sector salaries have been around 15% of GDP for a decade. Inflation reduce it, then raises increse it again, so it doesn't change much.

Yes — but ðat was while investment stagnated, commodities buoyed the economy and manufacturing stagnated, and education continues to widen the capability gap to oðer societies. Now public servants feel ðey deserve more, and society will not give ðem anything because it feels illserved; and, ðis being a government of syndicalists, it has to say no but does not know how to.

We are in a serious situation, we may get into a long term crisis. But we are not following the steps of Europe.

Mutatus mutandis, we are. Check my oðer post. To sum it up here, Southern Europe malinvested based on credit in Euros, in real state instead of manufacturing and services capabilities; we not even invested, but spent all we gained from commodities. And both of us are into a demographic transition changing ðe rules of ðe game, yet we are not capable even of acknowledging ðe fact.

Comment Re:Brazil (Score 1) 999

I also wonder what you are talking about.

Check my oðer post, elsewhere in ðis thread.

I just can't find the mistakes our current government is making that the EU also made. We aren't getting deeper into debt, we aren't taking any power away from our central bank, and we aren't turning into foreign commerce (that being a mistake or not).

Yes, we are. We are spending like ðere was no tomorrow, and in current expenses, not investments; we are bending public accounting to allow ðe Central Bank to print more money; we are living on exporting commodities, pricing manufacturing out of ðe market (Dutch malady).

If anything, the current brazilian government just shows that the set of available mistakes is huge, and that they can still get completely original ones.


Comment Re:Brazil (Score 1) 999

Brazil is still one of the better ones when it comes to fiscal responsibility.

I hope so. Actually, for the last decade or so the current government has been lowering the standards on the public sector accounting and manipulating the numbers both on public finance and on mixed capital companies, so we just do not trust the rosy picture the government paints. It is like we are living for the last decade on the trust built on the decade and a half before that.

where I live (one of the larger cities in Europe), a lot of administration has moved to Brazil because of the lower tax cap (at least that is what they told us).

Yes, that is true. But the common citizen, who earns a lot less than his First World counterpart, pays double: he pays taxes to keep roads, but has to change his mini SUV often because asphalt is so bad cars last less; he pays taxes to keep the police force, but has to pay for private security because of violence and criminality; he pays taxes to build schools and hire teachers, to the cost of up to US$5K per pupil (in the Federal District) and then pays another U$5K per children in a private school because public schools are garbage; and he has to live in a closed condominium because public streets are too noisy, since government is not competent enough to police noise levels and mediate between neighbours. Also, plan on the additional risk from a practically nonfuncional judicial system. Many people resort to bribery to get justice done or to navigate state bureaucracy.

Also, taxes on payroll, on manufacturing and imports are ridiculously high. Manufactured or imported goods usually cost triple as they would cost in the US, or double the European prices.

If you earn enough to pay double for all these services government is supposed to provide, and to pay around double for everything imported (which is nearly all electronics and automobiles plus quite some stuff), life is pretty good.

The reason why I, as a foreign investor, would prefer Brazil over, lets say India, is that Brazil is now pretty much in the same position as the US was a long time ago: you have their own natural resources, your own industry and your own sales market. A major drop in foreign demand would not influence Brazil as much as it would influence China or India, who are very dependent on the western demand.

Actually, we are totally dependent on selling commodities, specially to China.

Comment Re:Brazil (Score 1) 999

But assuming you are confident Brazil is making the same, you know which mistakes Europe has made. Please elaborate.

We are spending against the future, but not getting much out of it. Government spent a lot on salaries by hiring and raising public sector salaries but managed to invest only a little bit — in (specially Southern) Europe, they invested a lot but much of it was malinvestment, that is, investments in building for a market that would never realise, as demographics did not generate demand.

To expand a bit, government here leaves little room for private investment by a ridiculously high tax level. The resulting dearth of capital makes interest rates relatively high. People have little in return because government simply spends a lot but public services provided are of very low quality. Government development agencies and programs were build and are funded, but these agencies only paid salaries and never managed to build the infrastructure for development they should.

Another similarity to Europe is that we are under demographic transition. We are below population reposition natality levels, but we have no immigration policy to speak of, and compared to Europe we have much lower savings and education to see us through the transition to an hypothetical new economic model which would not rely on growth. And we haven’t even started to think about this supposed new economic model; we do not even know if it is possible to build such a thing.

Now, for where we are quite different from Europe: we are relatively comfortable because we have been exporting lots of commodities for high prices, because of the Chinese industrial growth and living standards improvement. Specially iron ore and soy. We have been lucky. For instance, now that Chinese growth is decelarating, crops have taken a hit in the United States and thus commodity prices are likely to stay high for a while longer, perhaps enough for China to recover and keep our balance of payments healthy. But we are not using the opportunity to build a manufacturing or a services factor: we have bad transportation insfrastructure for manufacturing (Chinese model), and a incredibly low quality education for services (Indian model).

Comment Brazil (Score 3, Informative) 999

Brazil and Australia are looking good

We are not. No education to speak of, a government which is making the same mistakes which resulted in the European crisis, lots of crime and violence. Also we are more and more becoming an exporter of commodities, because our tax system is totally regressive and cumulative, working against manufacturing and services by making everything very, very expensive — and we have lower salaries than those of the First World.

I lived in Europe. Only reason I did not stay was that I was not allowed to.

Comment Buckli pri keyboards? (Score 0) 152

Once I a people from Singapore or omei ðe like organii to place a big order i Unicomp, manufacturer of IBM’s Model M buckli pri keyboards. Ðe reference to ‘their fingers -- spindly creatures that seem to flail about at their own will, banging at the computer keyboard with such frequency and ferocity that to visit their live-in training centers in South Korea is to be treated to a maddening drum roll of clicks and clacks’ reminded me of Model Ms.

Comment Re:Sickness still bigger ðan any industry (Score 1) 116

Barbarians — mainly Germans — for many years were incorporated as auxiliarii to the legionarii, around ðe borders. As ðey suffered injustices — today we would say ‘discrimination’ — and sensed ðe empire crumbling down, ðey just took compensation by occupying lands more and more into ðe heart of ðe empire, until ðey reached Rome itself.

Where you went wrong is ðat you seem think of Romans as ðose who inhabited Rome and ðe surrounded territories, and spoke Latin. Actually, all ðe submitted peoples were more or leß romanised, and spoke vulgar Latin and derivatives ðereof, sometimes along with ðeir own ancestral languages, but more often instead of ðem or in a combined language — which gave us Neolatin languages from Portuguese to Romanian, from French to Italian. Moreover, all of ðe empire eventually received Roman citizenship, with or without voting rights, so no freemen who lived in the empire, but ðe recently arrived German tribes at ðe borders, were considered Barbarians.

Comment Re:Sickness still bigger ðan any industry (Score 1) 116

Barbarians with more advanced technology ðan Romans? Now you have my attention, please provide any references.

Actually, what really set apart Romans (including Greeks and oðer subjects of ðe empire) was a civic superstructure, not any technology; but ðat superstructure sure had technological implications. Only, at ðe time, ðe military aspect was more important ðan ðe technological one.

Barbarians were not ðere all along, but ðey were already occupying parts of the empire, particularly around ðe borders, as Romans not left, but dwindled away due to lack of fertility, just as with our civilisation now. Ðe parallels are stunning.

Comment Sickness still bigger ðan any industry (Score 0) 116

I wonder if this has any bearing on why Russian rockets haven't been making it into space successfully, or whether it and the launch failures are all part of some general industrial malaise that is taking place.

It is quite obviously part of a sickneß, but not an industrial sickneß: it is a civilisational sickneß, and as part of ðe periphery of our exChristian civilisation Rußia is bound to feel its effects even heavier ðan the civilisational core.

Historically, new civilisations start eiðer at ðe periphery of old ones (think Barbarians occupying ðe Roman empire) or out of it, so Rußia might still have some hope, but ðese ings typically take many generations of getting unconsciously rid of old habits of mind and building new ones from ðe most enduring parts of ðe old and from old things from elsewhere

Comment Re:Fifth time? (Score 1) 99

ARM chips since ARMv7 have supported the Thumb-2 instruction set, which has 32-bit instructions with CISC features like making an optional left shift available to most instruction, and allowing each comparison to be followed by up to four conditional statements. It's what most JIT and my compilers target now, IIRC.

Ðat is quite different from being a Cisc proceßor in ðe mobile market, being able to choose some Cisc instructions wiðout carrying ðe full Cisc legacy is an advantage. And ARM has chosen ðe Thumb 2 instructions not to go back to Cisc, but to achieve a code density which is a furðer advantage over anything Intel can do wiðout throwing out its only real competitive advantage, which is ðat people are familiar with ðe x86 instruction set. Not ðat it buys Intel much in a market ðat will not use any legacy binaries, nor hand code much aßembly.

It's absolutely true that it's Intel whom must the uphill battle here. The fact that many Android applications are compiled to DEX, and the emergence of HTML5 runtimes offer some relief. I still think that despite Intel's dominance of the desktop market, it faced an uphill fight in the server arena as well, where it was competing against OSes which generally did not (yet) run on IA, using Linux and Windows.

Not ðe same situation at all. In servers, Intel has only really displaced Unix and Risc where MS Windows reached, or where x86 systems could be deployed wiðout ðe full feature set expected from Risc. In any case, Intel was carried by its traditional OSs. Now, it must adapt to new OSs, as even MS Windows Phone is quite a different beast from its desktop version, and all but irrelevant anyways.

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