By Sol Palha, Originally written Aug 30, 2006, but updated on May 12, 2016
The only thing that ever consoles man for the stupid things he does is the praise he always gives himself for doing them
Oscar Wilde 1856-1900, British Author, Wit
In India, a conservative society the economic boom of the last several years has transformed this nation. This year the number of individuals earning over 250,000 dollars more than doubled to over 50,000. While this figure may seem small ten years ago less than 10K individuals would have fallen in this category. As a result, a new middle class has emerged and they are now trying to duplicate the so-called American lifestyle. Coffee bars have mushroomed everywhere, high-end night clubs and fast food restaurants (Dominos Pizza, Subway, McDonald’s, etc.) are springing up all over the place, everyone is going to the top of the line cell phones, cars, washing machines, etc. All of a sudden you can get a 25k loan instantaneously from Citibank and credit cards are being pumped everywhere. Credit cards which were unheard of are now widely used and Indians are slowly becoming spenders and starting to buy a lot of things on credit; this was a big no-no in the past.
Now cocaine usage has become the big thing in India; it costs upwards of 100 dollars a gram. Remember the average salary in most parts of India is still about a 1 dollar a day. Cocaine has become one of the new status symbols as it costs means that only certain individuals can afford it. The theme is to go usually to these very high-end expensive night clubs and then use these drugs. The link to the story below illustrates this rather clearly Full Story
We can clearly see that the trend of fast foods, lots of coffee, drug usage, spending more money then you have, living in yesterday land with no thought of the present or future, etc. is slowly being pushed overseas. This clearly gives further weight to our theory that America is nothing but a psychological test bed and when something is shown to work well here it is then exported. This is not only occurring in India but is also taking place with the same speed in China and other rapidly developing nations in Asia. This issuance of easy credit is another reason why real estate prices have taken off so rapidly here; in Mumbai, the real estate market has appreciated over 100% in less than 24 months. Individuals can buy a huge amount of shares in India because they have come out with a system that is equivalent to margin trading in the U.S.A; the one difference is that you only have to put 20% of the money down and the rest is lent to you. Upon close examination, this sort of trading carries a much higher risk one that is normally associated with futures trading.
In a few years, one wonders if one will be able to tell the difference between the Asian mindset and the American mindset. Are the Asians about to give up what has helped them for centuries and embrace the dangerous system of credit and debt? Time will tell it’s the only teacher that kills all its students.
This simply tells us that the competing with the Joneses concept is being quite successfully exported worldwide. The theme of the big boys is to entrap the majority all over the world through debt. Little to these chaps understands that nothing comes for free or what might appear to look good could be nothing but invisible chains that keep you trapped forever.
There is one somewhat bright spot here. Entrepreneurial individuals can start to prepare themselves for a new big business opportunity in credit counselling and debt management is going to emerge. In the end, though many Jobs are being exported to these nations from the west; the smart individual with vision can leap frog ahead and be ready to offer services that no one has dreamed of yet. It goes without saying that these chaps are going to miss manage this credit they are being given; hence like the West credit counsellors, debt reduction services, debt consolidation services, psychological counselling, etc. are going to be in huge demand. One other bonus is that individuals here always think that services offered by the West are better. So if a Westerner were to combine with an easterner to open one of these services the profit potential could be huge. However bear in mind this is not something that is going to happen tomorrow but something that is already underway and the trend is gathering momentum very fast. Investors willing to take on some risk should study these emerging markets and look for companies that will benefit from this trend. As with any investment or business, one must be willing to study the companies one is going to deploy capital into. If you are thinking of opening a business, then it would be prudent to visit the country in question, and make connections; the key thing always starts small.
The world values the Seer above all men and has always done so. Nay, it values all men in proportion as they partake of the character of seers. The Elgin Marbles and a decision of John Marshall are valued for the same reason. What we feel in them is a painstaking submission to facts beyond the author’s control, and to ideas imposed upon him by his vision. So with Beethoven’s Symphonies, with Adam Smith’s ”Wealth of Nations” — with any conceivable output of the human mind of which you approve. You love them because you say, ”These things were not made, they were seen.”
John Jay Chapman 1862-1933, American Author
This video illustrates the average day of an American and you can see that Junk food plays a vital role
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