The iPhone 5 is the Beginning of the End of Apple

And so it begins. Apple post Jobs is not what it used to be, and I knew it would happen sooner or later.The new iPhone 5 is not that groundbreaking and it feels like just about any other new smartphone: high-tech yes, groundbreaking not so much. The problem with companies like Apple is the visionary-type leader. Once he is gone, no one can really replace him. And then there is the keynote. Steve Jobs would cook up (no pun intended) all kinds of strange innovations and sometimes it was hard for us to see why they would work. Take the iPad: it looked like a big iPhone but Steve convinced us iPads make sense. And now they do.

There is nothing for Samsung to copy now that iPhone has nothing new to revolutionize

– Kumar Indresh

The iPhone 5 keynote by Tim Cook on the other hand felt like any other tech product launch. And the upgrades don’t make sense. It could be that Jobs is not around to tell us why a longer iPhone is better, or it could be because he didn’t design it in the first place. If you own Apple stock, I would contemplate a sale pretty soon. If you don’t, I would contemplate a short-sale pretty soon.

Sour Times as Houses Seized by Banks

You know things are bad when you measure the performance of the economy in the rate of houses seized by banks. Nevertheless, in these sour times it is a good indicator of how screwed we really are. There should be a how-screwed-we-are index for this.

Reuters reports that the rate has slightly gone down which is good news and might shed some hope on the future of America.

We should probably also spend a minute thinking about why people buy houses they can’t afford. But let’s not rub salt into the wound at this point.

Innocence of Muslims vs. Life of Brian

I have written a lot today about censorship and politics. But this news story caught my eye. The U.S. ambassador Christopher Stephens was killed in Libya because a guy posted a video on YouTube making fun of the Muslim prophet Mohammed. If you have seen the movie Life of Brian you know the drill: a religious figure is being made fun of on the expense of everyone else. But what struck me here was the reaction. Killing the ambassador, really?

Below is a clip of the movie Life of Brian. The notorious YouTube trailer for the movie Innocence of Muslims follows after.

Below is the Innocence of Muslims trailer. Can you see the connection? 

How to Save America

As most of you know, America is on a decline. The country (I know, America is a continent but bear with me) is struggling with jobs, lackluster spending growth and an unclear future for a country geared mostly towards consumerism. Turns out, mass tourism is the answer.

Take China. An arch foe, stealing both jobs from American factory workers and owning a pretty damn substantial $4.5 trillion of U.S. debt. Sure, China helped grow American businesses by offering dirt cheap manufacturing but “dirt cheap” has amounted to quite a lot of money and the various Chinese entrepreneurs are now ready to spend.

Here comes the good part.

Consider where China is coming from for example. All those years under strict communist rule has made the Chinese people very eager to loose the shackles and experience a free individualistic modern lifestyle. The Foreign Direct Investment in the Special Economic Zones in China (such as Shanghai and Shenzhen) also helped promote what western culture is all about (since we manufacture all our stuff there).

What do you get if you add these two together? Heaps of opportunity and a brighter future for America. Chinese people with new-found money are eager to experience all the neat tricks of western culture and America is there to provide. It’s time for America to switch to mass tourism.

The many decades of spreading American pop culture internationally (besides China) has also resulted in a pretty diverse and large group of people who love America, so why not let them come and boost the economy? There is no money left in American pockets anyways; someone else’s wallet is needed. If you can’t be an empire, being a tourist destination is the next best thing.

What do you think? Could boosting tourism actually be the viable answer to Obamacare?