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Chapter 4: A Field Guide to Resilient Investing

Brill, Hal Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

A Tour of the Nine Zones of the Resilient Investing Map

NOW THAT YOU ARE ORIENTED TO THE ROWS AND COLUMNS OF THE RIM, you are probably eager to see the colorful variety of investments that are blossoming all across this expanded territory. What do you find in the place where tangible assets chart an evolutionary course, or financial assets come close to home? This section is designed as a field guide, one that will help you recognize some of the species that you will encounter in each of the nine investment zones.

Here is where you’ll experience just how rich and vibrant resilient investing can be; the write-ups are packed with detail, providing a solid introduction to the diversity of options available in each zone. As with any field guide, this detail is fascinating but perhaps best taken in small doses; digging in to a couple of these zones in a sitting may give you more than enough to chew on. If so, we suggest that you return to this section periodically. Of course, the book’s website fills out every zone in ways we can’t fit into a book.

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Chapter 9: Tales of Resilient Living

Brill, Hal Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

The Authors’ Stories

NOW THAT YOU HAVE LEARNED TO DANCE AND DESIGNED YOUR RIM, perhaps your head is spinning as you consider the multitude of destinations that you could choose to visit. We have asked you to do some challenging work, but now you can put away your colored pencils and sketches. This chapter offers a change of pace and provides a more personal perspective on the journey.

Travelers have always gathered together, around watering holes and in roadhouses, to unwind, share stories, and tell tales. Swapping travel guides and poring over tattered maps is half the fun of it all! More importantly, it helps us remember that the map is not the territory; even a big map can convey only a fraction of what you will find once you get started.

In this spirit, here are three snippets about how we are personally using the Resilient Investing Map. Of course we don’t hold ourselves up as role models; each of us has banged his head against many hard objects, juggled too many balls in the name of wanting it all, or found his own bad habits getting him into trouble. And we are not the most diverse collection—three college-educated white guys who all co-own a specialty investment company. Yet we’ve earned our gray hairs by practicing what we preach, particularly in the investment realm; we hope that our experience and expertise offer some lessons that have value to others.

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Resource 2: The Investor’s Eye

Brill, Hal Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

THERE’S A PHRASE WE OFTEN USE: APPLYING THE INVESTOR’S EYE. We use “the eye” to think about, analyze, and put in perspective our financial choices as well as the personal and tangible investments we have outlined in this book. This is of course a very quick introduction to a topic that we have all given a lot of thought to over the years, but we wanted to give you a flavor of the questions that we, as investment advisors, run through when we are looking at new opportunities.

Certainly when buying a home or spending money for a college education or thinking about any big purchase, we all know what it means to think critically about these spending/investing decisions. Now we want to turn this type of thinking toward decisions about our personal, social, and community assets and the tangible things we buy with our money. In general, applying the investor’s eye means being more comprehensive in your thinking: think about the money with some degree of financial sophistication, think about how your decisions affect your family and community, and think about how you are helping or hindering the building of a better world. These elements of your big-picture perspective can be addressed through three aspects of applying the investor’s eye.

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3 Brazil’s Relations with the Middle East in the “Oil Shock” Era: Pragmatism, Universalism, and Developmentalism in the 1970s

PAUL AMAR Indiana University Press ePub

Faced with the energy crises of the 1970s, Brazil pursued a model of economic development that led to strengthening its ties with the Middle East, particularly Iraq and Saudi Arabia, filling a diplomatic vacuum in its foreign policy. High oil prices made securing its supplies a crucial issue for Brazil. Brazil’s foreign policy was thus geared to pragmatic ends, leading to the diversification of Brazil’s relations with Middle Eastern states.

The 1973 worldwide oil crisis, the result of geopolitical shifts beyond Brazil’s control, produced an acute foreign policy crisis in the country. Brazil, during this developmentalist period when its military government was pushing both industrialization and export-oriented commerce, was a nation dependent on imported oil. In fact, Brazil was the main importer of oil in the developing world at the time. In response to the oil shock, Brazil ended a phase of diplomatic inactivity vis-à-vis the Middle East, and launched a new outward-looking economic development project. The high price of oil made it necessary to find a more balanced commercial exchange with Middle Eastern countries in order to guarantee a constant stream of oil, particularly because of ongoing international instability. Through this pragmatic process of diplomatic expansion, Brazil managed to diversify its bilateral agenda, establishing diplomatic relations with ten states from the region in the hopes of attracting new markets for its national exports.

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5 Terrorist Frontier Cell or Cosmopolitan Commercial Hub? The Arab and Muslim Presence at the Border of Paraguay, Brazil, and Argentina

PAUL AMAR Indiana University Press ePub

Rabossi calls for a reframing of the discourse surrounding South America’s Tri-Border Region. He moves away from stereotypical discussions of terrorism to explore alternative narratives that are informed by migration trajectories, commercial engagements, and political complexities of the region’s Arab and Muslim populations.

Reading the international media, one would infer that the Tríplice Fronteira (in Portuguese) and Triple Frontera (in Spanish)—the region where the borders of Brazil, Argentina, and Paraguay meet, known as the Tri-Border Region in English—is a threat to international security. It condenses all aspects of a contemporary security agenda: terrorism and transnational mafias, piracy, smuggling, laundering of money and stolen goods, drug and arms trafficking. The region became (in)famous during the 1990s after being denounced as the logistical base for the attacks in Buenos Aires against the Israeli embassy in 1992 and against the Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association (AIMA) in 1994. The existence of an important Arab and Islamic business community actively involved in cross-border commercial activities was enough to lead to the conclusion that Islamic terrorism existed in the region. Once suggested, the connection that linked Muslim Arabs, terrorism, commerce, and all kind of illegalities across the borders became a vicious circle that reinforced the accusations and insecurities.

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