01 Nov 2009

Sample Essay: Global Finance Today Be Compared To ‘Casino Capitalism’

“Financial markets today are globally alive through international telecommunication system. The fabric of modern financial environment is woven in such a system. Therefore trading and transfers of payments go on around the clock. Financial markets include foreign exchange, fixed income, and equity markets. Financial intermediaries such as banks and insurance companies have a role in it. Cultural, political, and historical back grounds and complexity and availability of technology of financial institutions differ across borders. Since the dawn of the recorded history, financial transaction was into existence.3000BC documents of Sumerian, shows the systematic use of credit in Mesopotamia. Hammurabi’s code mentioned the regulations of credit in Babylon around 1800BC. In the city state of Genoa, Banking institutions started in the twelfth century AD. Similar to the modern form, security issues were existed in the Italian city state in the middle ages. Financial features and financial derivatives are not something new. These were widely traded in the 1600s in the Amsterdam Securities exchange. This shows that financial activities such as borrowing, investing in securities, financial contracting are very old. Only the procedures in these activities have changed through the ages. Ways of clearing and settling payments to facilitate the exchange of goods, services, and assets are provided by a financial system. Pooling of funds for the subdividing of shares in firms to facilitate diversification is provided by financial system. For coordinating decentralized decision making in various sectors of economy, the required information is provided by the financial system.” (1)

The important factors of financial environment are: 1. Growth rate of GDP.2. GDP percapita measured in terms of purchasing power parity (PPP).3.Import and Export rate.4.Inflation in the economy. Such factors affect the financial activity both at the micro level and macro level of economy. (2)

Additional movement towards globalization will need rethinking the natural world and position of capitalism in meeting the objectives of mankind, including its melding with both social and political objectives and institutions. A more open world economy will not be acceptable unless there is broad agreement on objectives, processes, and “fundamental values buttressing civil societies.” (3) In the last half century, capitalism has distorted as it has moved from a focus on nationwide prosperity and authority to growth and integration of local associations of nations; and it will have to be adapted further as diverse countries are brought into an open and integrated global system-one founded on roughly similar values expressed in freedom and social justice. These changes must address the recurring problems of poverty and an inequitable distribution of benefits and burdens (including unemployment and increasing uncertainty) within and among nations.

How does globalization affect the third world countries? (4) Globalization, if allowed to genuinely progress, will unlock the economic development potential that is currently suppressed by government interventions in many of the world’s poorest countries. But economic liberalization is far from a sure thing. It needs passionate advocates that can stir up public support to overwhelm the lobbying power of particular interest groups that benefit from protectionism, such as corporate agro-businesses and steel workers. Leftist attempts to halt globalization will only help these protectionists, resulting in an uneven distribution of capitalism and thus, an uneven distribution of poverty-induced suffering. (5)

People who criticize free market capitalism focus on the arrangement of markets and their association to all institutions. The unsteadiness and instability of energetic markets can diminish the economic footing of actual lives, or in additional macro-cases can pilot the collapse of nationwide and local economies. Susan Strange (1986) refers to this instability as ‘casino capitalism,’ (6) an occurrence she links to five developments: “innovations in the way in which financial markets work; the sheer size of markets; commercial banks turned into investment banks; the emergence of Asian nations as players; and the shift to self-regulation by banks” (Strange, pp.9-10).

The competitive environment of industry can be elaborated with the help of Porter’s five forces analysis. The five forces consist of those forces close to a firm, which affect a firm’s ability to serve its customer and make a profit. The five forces are: 1.The threat of a close substitute for the firm’s product, 2.The threat of entry of new competitors, 3.competitive rivalry and its intensity, 4.customers bargaining power, 5.suppliers bargaining power. If any one or more of the forces change the firm has to relocate its market. In a financial environment based on global financial market and integrated economy the competitive forces are also having a wider reach. A firm has to think about diversification in its business to absorb the shock of the market. A proper strategic decision making is required on the part of the management to constructively explore the various aspect of the emerging global environment.

To talk about the global market volatility and the resourceful obliteration energies of the different sectors, the dimness of risk and economic indecision lurk in the backdrop of this genre of Publicity and promotion. “The danger emerges in the shape of savings anxiety, failure to innovate scientifically and technologically” (7), the lack of elasticity and pace, or being inundated by information. Paradoxically, the foundation layer most vulnerable to monetary instability is absented from these commercials. The risk experienced is by investors or by executives. But the risk itself provides the opportunity.

When we talk about the global finance at its present state we are presented with economic blood on the roads, the sea of crimson ink, the millions of dollars of worth disappeared into thin air, the individual pain and community witch-hunting, the millions or tens of thousands of populace whose houses are valued less than mortgages they have already obtained – all of it had been originated by excesses the global community was warned about. Very loudly, often and a lot earlier.

The world was warned by people with the most money in the world who have a fair idea of how the global financial casino operates and don’t have a very favourable opinion of what they are witnessing, even as they flourish. Warren Buffet, almost certainly the most successful financier of this era, when he talks about the financial speculators and manipulators operating under the polite title of “hedge funds” (8).

“In Wall Street you have this progression from the innovators, to the imitators, to the swarming incompetents,” he told the CNBC financial network last week. “And what happens is that the results achieved by the innovators enable the product to be sold by a lot of people, simply because the record of a few people was good.

“So the idea that billions, well, trillions of dollars can be managed to get above-average results while charging fees that are way higher than normal just defies logic.”

Nor does Buffet buy the logic that the world’s largest economy can avoid a recession by the simple expedient of cutting interest rates. It’s too late. The debt bubble is too big.

“By any commonsense definition, we are in a recession. On balance, most [Americans’] net worth has been heading south for a considerable period of time.

“And if you owned a house, and you had an 80 per cent mortgage on it, and 20 per cent equity a year ago, you might not have any equity now. Millions of people are in this position now.”

Plenty of them live in Australia, and are being pummelled by the Reserve Bank.

Four years ago, another billionaire, George Soros, a veteran currency speculator, wrote a book called The Bubble Of American Supremacy, in which he warned about the dangers presented by excessive debt in the housing sector: “The market in securitised mortgages is enormous, much superior than in government bonds.”

He said there was “a real flaw in the system”, which would inevitably disrupt the bond market and global lending. After four years, it has come to pass.

Soros on January 23, writing in the Financial Times, presented an article providing a clear, bleak synopsis of the field of disagreement: “The current financial crisis was precipitated by a bubble in the US housing market … Ease of credit generates demand that pushes up the value of property, which in turn increases the amount of credit available.” (9)

In conclusion I would say that global financial system today is very much in correlation to the term ‘casino capitalism’. Being in the world today is no different than any Las Vegas casino. Either you win it and make it big in the rat race of capitalism or get overtaken and swallowed whole by the individualistic nature of the free market.


1. [The Global Financial System: A Functional Perspective by Dwight B Crane page5-12]

2. [http://www.epa.gov/ocem/nacept/ green _dividends.pdf]

3. [Bohm, D. (2000), The Implicate Order and Wholeness (Boston: Ark Paperbacks, 2000)]

4. [Beck, U. (2000), ‘A Global Prospect: Beyond the Work Society,’ Global Focus 12(1): 79-88]

5. [Dingel, Jonathan. Globalization: The Third World’s Best Ally, 2005]

6. [Strange, Susan. 1986, Casino Capitalism. Publsiher: Oxford]

7. [Balasubramanyam, V. N., Salisu, M., and Sapsford, D. (1996), ‘Foreign Direct Investment and Growth in EP and IS countries’, Economic Journal 106: 92-105]

8. [Blomstrom, M., and Persson, H. (1983), ‘Foreign Investment and Spillover Efficiency in an Underdeveloped Economy: Evidence from the Mexican Manufacturing Industry’, World Development 14: 493-501]

9. [Dollar, D. and Collier, P. (2001), Globalisation, Growth and Poverty: Building an Inclusive World Economy (Washington, DC: World Bank)]

25 Oct 2009

Sample Essay: Dalai Lama, the World of Tibetian Buddhism

The truths and brilliance found in His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s theology speak of peace and generosity for a group of people constantly bombarded with hatred and war. Since that fateful day some fifty years ago, when China, then under Mao’s rule, invaded Tibet and sent thousands of men, women, and children into exile, His Holiness has been sending messages of hope and enlightened to the world around him through the deep understanding and insightful interpretation of ancient texts.

In his book, The World of Tibetan Buddhism, the Dalai Lama begins with an overview of what Tibetan Buddhism actually is. There are many different forms of thought in classic Buddhism, and these forms of thought are referred to as yanas or vehicles. Within these vehicles there are, of course, many separate avenues to be taken: the vehicle of individual liberation, the vehicle of universal salvation, and the vehicle of tantra. And together these various vehicles outline and label the relationship between humans and divine beings. The Buddha, it is said, also listed another vehicle, one of mediation and removing oneself from all external devises, this being referred to as the Brahma vehicle.

All of these vehicles, from a Buddhist view, demand respect, as they are all connected and play an intricate role in determining one’s place in the cycle. Though, relying on these things alone will not necessarily lead to ultimate liberation and freedom. To achieve such results, the Dalai Lama states that we must forget our fundamental ignorance, which binds us to the constant cycle of life and death in Samsara. Where Tibetan Buddhism differentiates itself from classic Buddhism is in the vehicle of Individual verse Universal. The Individual Vehicle enlightens the view of selfness toward the person or to those of personal identity, whereas the Universal Vehicle is farther reaching, and not limited to, or confined to just the individual, but to the whole of humanity, which is what the Dalai Lama is famous for teaching. Tibetan Buddhism is founded on the belief on non-violence, and this non-violent belief is rooted in two very basic understandings: 1) “as sentient beings, none of us want suffering, and 2) suffering originates from its causes and conditions.” So according to the Dalai Lama, if we do not desire suffering, then the logical step is to refrain from destructive habits. If pain and suffering come not out of isolation, but from the results and conditions we have placed ourselves in, then we only have to end the cause, and for Tibetan Buddhism, non-violence is the result to ignorance.

In the beginning, and throughout the book, the Dalai Lama makes reference to the Four Truths, and within these truths there are two sets of cause and result: “suffering is the result, and the origin of suffering is its cause…and the path leading to it is the cause of that peace.” So the happiness everyone in the world tends to look for, to seek out, can only happen when we truly purify our minds.

When talking about Buddhism, you cannot simply talk about selflessness as an overarching principle, bound only to one faction, or ideology, or theme. In fact, there are four different explanations with regards to selflessness: All composite phenomena are impermanent, All contaminated things and events are unsatisfactory, All phenomena are empty and selfless, and Nirvana is true peace. To begin to think about this, the Dalai Lama offers the idea of “I”, and what that means to us all, what our perceived ideas of it is. Everything belongs to “I”, but through meditation, a person can begin to loosen their grip on such attachments and gradually begin to liberate themselves, and this is all done through the path to selflessness and emptiness.

The Four Noble Truths that are continually referred to, stand as the master plan, the frame work for the teachings the Buddha gave. And when looking into the various explanations of philosophical ideologies, it becomes necessary to understand and distinguish the different sutras. A lot of times the texts in these sutras must be interpreted. For example, in certain sutras it says that one must kill one’s parents. Of course, this cannot be taken literally, so a degree of interpretation must be used. This is where the use of various sutras comes into play, because, as the Dalai Lama states, “parents” in this particular sutra refer to “contaminated actions and attachments, which result in future rebirth”. But someone who is studying these sutras should also look into the difference between interpretable and definitive sutras, which have the ability. Within these various schools, Tibetans follow the Shen-tong view. This view accepts only ten sutras as definitive, meaning they are not up for interpretation, rather like laws. The Shen-tong view says that all phenomena are “empty of themselves, and that all phenomena are ultimately empty of existing even conventionally”. Many masters of this school of thought, including the Dalai Lama, have gained and achieved extremely high realizations on the Generation and Completion Stages of tantra. However, if we were to literally believe that all things are empty of themselves, then nothing at all could, or would, exist, and would therefore fall into the far extreme of Nihilism. To speak of phenomena as having an empty nature, cannot be misinterpreted as phenomena not existing at all, but rather dependent upon many aspects of ideology, so to understand one part of a sutra, one must understand another, one must look at the whole part rather than just a piece.

To begin with some ideas on what are good points and valid ideas, I would first like to mention the heavy emphasis on the non-violent mentality. I see this idea as very courageous, given what has happened to the Tibetan people in the past, and is continuing to happen to them. To remain non-violent against such violent oppressors is noble. It seems that many great minds and many great people have followed this mindset, and in the long run, have made a greater positive impact then the ones who have chosen to violence to be heard. I also agreed completely with the idea of forgetting, and letting go of our ignorance. For such a long time the world has been plagued by evil, and this evil, according to Tibetan Buddhism stems from ignorance. I loved the statement that “genuine freedom and liberation can only be achieved when our fundamental ignorance, our habitual misapprehension of the nature of reality, is totally overcome.” I found, after reading that sentence, that that view can be linked to many of the things happening in our own lives. And then I found myself, thinking about the interpretation of the text, how I perceived genuine freedom and liberation as thinking about something as simple saving gas by taking the bus, and the ignorance of our dependency to drive cars. The idea that our ignorance underlies every aspect of our lives seems incredibly poignant to the lives of Americans. This ideology seems very close to that of rethinking the way go about our daily lives, and seems closely connected to the way we live and die.

What I thought was the weakest point, was that of interpreting various sutras and texts to understand the true meaning. I see this as very dangerous in some cases. I see the manipulation of certain texts to certain people justification to their own ideology and bringing a sense a duty to views they have. Yet, I understand that the overwhelming belief of Tibetan Buddhism is a non-violent, is still wonder about individual’s beliefs, people who do not fully read, or understand the teachings of Buddha. It seems that anytime you have the possibility to interpret something, it’s inevitable that and outcome, somewhere down the line, will be a negative one, and one that does not agree with the ideologies foundation. But I do not condemn this viewpoint to simply Tibetan Buddhism.

No, this opinion can be said for any religion or idea, where a certain bit of information is open for interpretation. To stay on the subject of Tibetan Buddhism, and that of The World of Tibetan Buddhism, I am thinking of the specific example of in certain sutras, one must kill one’s parents. The Dalai Lama reiterates that this cannot be taken as literal, and in fact, it is the interpretation that suggests one must cleanse oneself of contaminated attachments, but what if someone did take that as literal? What if that person was a troubled person, just beginning to read and delve into Buddhism and they read that one must kill one’s parents to achieve enlightenment, now that is a dangerous thing. I do not think a majority of the people of the capacity to fully understand the true meaning of Buddhism, nor do I believe they have the patience.

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17 Oct 2009

Essays on The Horse and His Boy

The Horse and His Boy is a tale about a young slave boy, Shasta, and the Narnian horse, Bree.  This is the only novel of the Narnian Chronicles which does not have a person of Earth being the main character.  The story begins with Shasta as a baby.  As he grows, Shasta quickly learns his place as a slave, subject to the will and whim of the man who owns him.  On night Shasta overhears the man that raised him speaking to a powerful nobleman about selling him.  After being bought, Shasta meets Bree, the nobleman’s horse, and to his astonishment the horse speaks to him.  They decide to escape and ride off to Narnia, meeting another pair of runaways, Aravis and her horse Hwin, during their trip.  Though obtaining freedom, can they keep it?

The Horse and His Boy is written by C.S. Lewis as the fifth book in the Chronicles of Narnia, though the events of the novel take place shortly before the Pevensie children’s return to Earth after ruling over Cair Paravel.  In it he explores the concepts of slavery and freedom and the extremes that individuals will go to in order to be free.  Additionally, he explores how loyalty to other freedom seekers plays into the overall quest for freedom.  The lessons of this book are the value of freedom to everyone and how, in order to obtain and maintain freedom, we need others.

Demonstrating his continuing talent, Lewis creates believable, dynamic characters, not all of which are human.  The character Shasta begins the story as a relatively quiet, complacent slave who knows almost nothing of the outside world.  His chance encounter with Bree, the Narian horse, begins his education into how dynamic the world outside his experiences is.  As they encounter Aravis and Hwin, they gain strength, both in numbers and in determination, just as we obtain strength from one another in our quest for our own freedom.

Students today face such challenges in their quest for academic enlightenment.  Without a sound education and the degrees they seek, the majority of them are destined to be veritable slaves, working in substandard jobs as common wage slaves.  To break out of this future, they must obtain better education and to do this, they often need help.  This help can come in the form of tutor sessions or study groups, but even this is not always enough.  Students often lack the skills necessary for research and quality writing.  This is where we come in.  Our company provides quality writing services to assist students and professionals alike.  With the diverse nature of our writing staff, there are few topics we cannot handle.  With our support, the odds of success swing back in favor of the students.  All they need do is contact us today and let us help them with their next academic assignment.  Without a doubt, once you see the quality of our work, you will return often.

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