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Archive for May, 2012

Japan’s federal debt is scheduled to reach 240% of GDP by the end of this year. Not surprisingly, Fitch downgraded Japan today, from AA to A+. Here’s the standard treatment from the Financial Times: Fitch Downgrades Japan on Public Finances.

To rate Japan A+ is generous, to say the least.  It is *impossible* for Japan to meet its obligations by growing its economy.  It is undergoing the early stages of a demographic implosion, and its economy is a shambles after the 3/11 disaster.  As Kyle Bass is well known for explaining, Japan’s financial situation is “spring loaded,” with disastrous consequences, if even the slightest changes occurs to its debt financing costs, and these changes are coming fast!  Here’s Bass, discussing the matter, in brief:

In my upcoming course, The First History for Adults, Part 5-1: The History of Japan, I will discuss how Japan got into its present predicament, what the essence of the present historical moment is for Japanese culture, and what the likeliest outcomes are that will shake the world in the 21st century.  The course starts July 14th, and discounted registration is still available!

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As many PHR readers know, I created HistoryAtOurHouse–the ultimate history resource for homeschoolers–over five years ago.  It has grown by leaps and bounds in that time, and even spawned two (and soon more) associated product lines. Here are some relevant links to explore, for those of you interested in the potential for an educational revolution through sound pedagogy and the distance learning paradigm:

HistoryAtOurHouse Links

ScienceAtOurHouse Links

 

MusicAtOurHouse Links

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HistoryAtOurHouse podcast #4 features a segment from the High School class on the topic of what I call the “Thucydidean” approach to history.

Thucydides is the first historian to explicitly identify that history should be pursued for the purpose of instruction, as I discussed recently here.  As a tribute to Thucydides, I thus refer to the objective pursuit of knowledge about the past–as opposed to the intrinsicist and subjective approaches–as “Thucydidean.”

http://historyatourhouse.podbean.com/2012/04/30/the-thucydidean-approach-to-history/

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Japan has 54 nuclear reactors, but as of Saturday, not one of them will be in operation…

Before the 3/11 disaster, Japan relied on nuclear power for about 30% of its electricity, and there were plans to increase that to 50% by 2030 with the construction of new reactors.  Now what?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/may/03/japan-nuclear-power-closure

Chris Martenson, one of the experts I respect most on the topic of the on-going global economic crisis, has some thoughts about how to integrate Japan’s energy crisis within a broader framework.  Here’s his article:

http://www.chrismartenson.com/blog/japan-another-spinning-plate-global-economy-circus/72033

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HistoryAtOurHouse podcast #3 features a segment from the High School class on the topic of “Subjectivism vs. History”

http://historyatourhouse.podbean.com/2012/04/23/subjectivism-vs-history/

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