Sunday, April 23, 2017

Book review "SPECULATOR High Ground" by Doug Casey and John Hunt

I like and recommend "Speculator High Ground" first in the High Ground Novels. I learned of this book though recommendations of others who speculate and invest in mining shares. "Speculator High Ground" was very insightful on economics, politics, philosophy, and adventure. An educational and entertaining story. I usually don't read books that are fiction but this has a good story and characters.

Below are my notes, things I found interesting. Like many have said in other reviews, this book will keep you thinking.


Lesson one: to succeed, position yourself to take advantage of luck. Lesson two: bad luck happens. So plan on bad luck, not good luck.

Professors that teach these subjects never define what money is, how is it important. Money isn't just hunks of metal, pieces of paper or computer entries. It is a representation of all the time spent earning it. It represents all the good things you want to have, and do, and provide for others. It is a concentrated form of like itself.

It is like teachers expected everyone to join a union, like theirs, and collect a salary for the rest of their lives.

On page 90
UN, United States came in the the African country with hundreds of millions of dollars to build new bureaucracies. What this ended up doing is: Free food depressed farm prices, bankrupting farmers and driving them to the city to beg for the free food that made farming uneconomic. It wasn't a lack of sufficient government that led to all this dysfunction, but rather the cutthroat competition for control - ownership, really of the government, followed by its exploitation..

Page 96
"My dear boy, you're dealing with a business that turns your money and their dream into their money and your dreams."

Page 109
Soundness... briefly described as integrity. Charles said his Uncle supplied him with books. "he thought I would learn important lessons from. He called them sound books."

What is wealth?

Page 217
One character thinking a Harvard grad or having an Ivy League degree was a badge even if not real. The other saw it as evidence that she'd spent years swimming in a  cesspool of political correctness.

Page 226-227
Politics, national debt, patriots and how the politicians may be misguided, rather than the revealed essence of the state itself.

Page 244
The discussion is on what is harmful... everything can be harmful in large quantities even food. There are many voluntary activities that risk harming the user, such as extreme sports, or that harm society, such as voting socialists into positions of power. We don't ban those activities.

Page 245
The tax cheat to many is looked at as a despised individual. The story in the book "Let's say a man approaches you with a gun and demands the money in your purse. Out of fear you give it to him. Should you also turn over the cash you have hidden in your hatband? If you don't, are you cheating the thug?" The moral thing is to deny funding him and defend your property... I really like the next line... Your property represents the hours of your life you spent to earn it; in a way, property is concentrated life. The defense from the one character is then everyone has to pay more! The moral context is the thief would have to rob someone else for more money. She replied "If everyone abided by that, the country would go broke." The best reply not the country but the government would go broke. We are idiots for thinking it has a right to tax and that taxes are even necessary for an orderly society.

Page 248
How can someone be opposed to charity? "charity tends to destroy the recipient by, in effect, rewarding him for his misfortune. We all understand accidents happen people often need or deserve help. Such help should come from an individual to another. This encourages responsibility of both the giver and receiver. Big organizations destroy capital end up making the recipient feel and behave like a mooch. Not to mention how much actually goes to the cause.

Increasingly in our society, people have come to accept that the ends justify the means, and therefore government should be allowed to do pretty much anything. This is of course, the road to socialism and fascism.

Page 368
The topic of insider trading came into play: From an ethical standpoint, only shareholders, not the public, have a right to corporate information. It goes on to say a CEO or CPA who have fiduciary duties not to put themselves ahead of the shareholders. But applied in any other sense, making insider trading a criminal offense only quashes the free flow of information and chills the functionality of whistle blowers. ~ But it does give regulators a reason for existing and law firms a massive source of income.

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