5G is about more than fast speeds

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Port Phillip Publishing  
Selva Freigedo
Melbourne, Australia
Tuesday, 12 February 2019
5G Is about More than Fast Speeds
5G is about more than fast speeds
Just how deplorable are the deplorables?
Trump missed his last great opportunity

By Selva Freigedo in Albert Park

You log into your phone to quickly check something online.

But that ‘quickly’ soon turns into a minute…five minutes…10.

The page isn’t loading.

You notice you only have one bar.

So you move around… eventually getting two bars...four…but the website still isn’t loading.

You give up.

Who hasn’t experienced bad mobile reception?

Especially in the morning, when it seems like everyone on the commute train has their eyes glued to their smartphone.

They are reading the paper, watching Netflix, listening to podcasts, sharing photos…you name it.

It’s pretty incredible when you think that a few years ago this wasn’t possible.

Mobile phones aren’t just for placing calls or sending texts anymore. We pretty much use them for everything.

Australians are ingesting more and more data. 

According to a recent survey by Deloitte, 89% of Australians own a smartphone. Yet only 22% of users think that mobile networks are ‘good enough’ during their commute. 

And, to cope with the massive amounts of data we consume, we will need better connections.

Enter 5G.


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So what is this technology? It is the next generation of wireless connectivity that will allow for faster download speeds. You will probably be hearing a lot about 5G this year.

3G allowed you to watch video. More recently, 4G gave us quicker connections.

5G will mean even faster download speeds. But, it is not just that. 5G will create a whole new ball game.

You see, most of the wireless versions we’ve seen before were mostly to enable ‘human to human’ connections. 5G will allow for ‘smart devices’ to connect and communicate with each other through artificial intelligence…without the need for humans.

It will allow for self-driving cars, virtual intelligence and even remote robotics to happen. With 5G the latency (or time delay) drops, which allows for faster response times.

Why is it so much faster?

While with 4G you have huge antennas covering vast amounts of areas, 5G will be different. 5G will use small cellphone towers instead. These cellphone towers will be placed closer together serving smaller areas. The fact that you are closer will allow for faster speeds. 

But, there is something else that makes 5G a big deal.

5G could also be set to revolutionise the military. 

As the South China Morning Post recently reported:

‘The 5G network and the internet of things enlarge and deepen the cognition of situations in the battlefield by several orders of magnitude and produce gigantic amounts of data, requiring AI to analyse and even issue commands,” said Dr Clark Shu, an AI and telecommunication researcher at the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China. […]’

But the more we rely on technology and the more connected we are, the more we are vulnerable to hacking. As the article continued:

‘“The biggest disadvantage of a 5G network in the battlefield is the vulnerability to electromagnetic interference – and hacking and intrusion,” said Shu.

‘“The significant increase in sensors and data nodes means an increase of exposure, and an increased risk of being attacked.”’

As we have written before, there is a Cold War-esque conflict going on. And the proxy wars are getting fought everywhere: space, Venezuela…and we expect that 5G will be another front.

In fact, in a recent report by the US Electromagnetic Defense Taskforce, they noted 5G development could be crucial (emphasis is mine):

‘5G applications are forecast to exceed $400 billion by 2022, with the construction and maintenance of a prospective US network resulting in 3 million jobs and a $500 billion increase in GDP. Rapid creation of a global 5G network is also a cornerstone in China’s industrial plan to compete with Western interests by creating a “Digital Silk Road.” This integrated network of digital infrastructure or “spatial information corridor” will also promote the adoption of the Bei Dou navigation system (a Chinese alternative to GPS), according to the US Department of Commerce’s Office of Commercial Economic Analysis. Currently, China’s 5G plan is underwritten by half a trillion dollars in investment with a first-to-market goal to deploy 5G commercially by 2020. In total, China will put more than $10 trillion dollars to the One Belt One Road strategy, of which the Digital Silk Road is one of three components

‘By 2035, 5G is expected to enable $12.3 trillion in global economic output. The states or non-states that control the 5G network will dictate or control all digital transactions including the ability to share and receive information. China’s control over the majority of hardware manufacturing needed to create 5G components and antennas (41 percent of the market and rising) is part of Beijing’s plan to deploy a network favorable to Chinese economic and security interests. Because control of 5G is roughly equivalent to control of the Internet, open 5G is critical to freedom and free-market economics. Meanwhile, access to the 5G-millimeter wave bandwidth will be critical to operations in all war-fighting domains, in particular, space C2.’

As the US-China trade deadline is fast approaching, keep in mind that tensions aren’t only about trade. The two powers are facing off over economic, technology and military domination. 

That’s why we think that any agreement may only be a temporary ‘patch’.


Selva Freigedo,
Editor, Markets & Money

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Just How Deplorable Are the Deplorables?
By Terence Duffy in Melbourne, Australia

For the last couple of weeks we’ve had a look at Mr Trump and his history of wheeling and dealing.  We’ve also looked at why, perhaps, Mr Trump spends so much time telling it like it isn’t.

In case you missed that insight, here’s a summary for you. I took it from Stephen Grosz, a psychoanalyst and author of The Examined Life, as reported in the Financial Times, 12 January.

‘...Before throwing his hat into the political ring, Trump threw it into the wrestling arena. Between 1988 and 2013, he ran wrestling events, appeared ringside (notably in the Battle of the Billionaires), and was even inducted into the World Wrestling Entertainment Hall of Fame. Despite being presented as a competitive sport, professional wrestling is scripted. The competitors, results, pre-match and post-match interviews — all of it is make-believe. The broadcasters give their audience all the things you’d expect in a work of fiction: backstory, suspense, symbolism and so forth.

...In professional wrestling, fact and fiction are worked together to create storylines that connect with the audience’s feelings. Wrestling’s good v bad, real v fake storylines provide clarity. What’s vital is this — fictional storylines can unleash genuine emotion. For the wrestling fan, as long as it feels true, it doesn’t matter that it’s fiction. Facts are beside the point. Feeling true is more important than being true.’

It’s quite a brilliant observation really. A remarkable insight into some silly human foibles. Feeling true is more important than being true.

As an example, take the wall that Mr Trump is so intent on building on the US southern border with Mexico.

Building a wall along the entire southern border (3,200 kilometres in length) was a key plank of Trump's 2016 election campaign. Last year he tweeted about it almost 100 times.

And just last week he used his State of the Union address to once again talk about his border wall. A great deal of that speech was spent on the perils that lie on the border. He vowed that one way or another, he would get his wall built.

And like all good real estate speculators, he wants to make sure that someone else — Mexico in this instance — will pay for his construction.

However the idea that Mexico will somehow pay for his wall now seems most unlikely. Especially with the new Mexican President Andres Obrador refusing to fund the wall. It’s looking more than likely that the US taxpayer will end up footing the bill.

Mr Trump says the wall will keep out drugs. That when the wall is completed, crime rates in America would be greatly reduced. Perhaps even cut in half.

He’s also suggesting his chant should now be ‘finish the wall’, not ‘build the wall’.  And he’s waxing lyrical about his, beautiful, better, brand new wall.

Yet here are the ‘facts’.

We know this from the current and on-going trial in the US of Joaquin Guzman Loera, the Mexican drug lord known as ‘El Chapo’.

Guzman sent his drugs into the US through legal checkpoints — stashed stealthily in cars, trucks and tanker trains. He also put his drugs in tunnels underneath all the existing, already-built US-Mexico border walls. He was not using unsecured stretches of the border to bring in drugs.

This has all been extensively reported. The fact is, the drug lords themselves have clearly stated that a wall won’t stop their activities.

Here’s how The New York Times reported it, 22 January.

‘The idea that people are walking drugs across the border as though they are illegal immigrants who would then be stopped by a wall across the border, that is not the pattern…

‘…One thing revealed at Mr. Guzmán’s trial is that among his earliest — and favorite — smuggling methods was sneaking drugs across the border in normal-looking passenger cars with secret compartments hidden in their chassis. Witnesses have described how he often split loads among several vehicles to help ensure that at least some of them made the journey undetected…

‘…At one point, testimony at the trial has shown, Mr. Guzmán sent tons of cocaine across the border in cans of jalapeños marked with the label La Comadre chiles. The cans were stacked on pallets in the backs of commercial tractor-trailers, which simply drove through official border entry points. To protect his product from being found, witnesses said, Mr. Guzmán often placed the cans filled with cocaine in the middle of the pallets, surrounded by cans with actual chiles.’

Guzman also used sea routes to get his drugs into the US.

A wall never works. As soon as you build one, people find a way to get over, under or through it. Yet I bet that this wall gets built somehow.

Just how stupid can people be? That we cannot be open to admitting the real problem — using the facts — and then solving it from there.

It’s just such a shame that the world is being held hostage to a minority group of Trump supporters. It’s deplorable.

Here’s a forecast for you. I forecast that the eventual wall, in whatever form it takes, will be a monument, an eternal reminder — for all of the world to see — of the disaster that Trump’s presidency will become.

If you want to read more about all things Trump, my colleague Phil Anderson took the time to write on the US president in a recent issue of Cycles Trends & Forecasts. It makes for interesting reading, I can say. You can read all about that here.

Terence Duffy,

Chartist, Phil Anderson’s Time Trader


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Trump Missed His Last Great Opportunity
By Bill Bonner in Paris, France

This week, the threads come together…the lines converge…the dots connect…

The State of the Union…

The Republicans and Democrats…

‘Us vs. Them’…

Our own wobbly ‘us’…

…and the coming financial catastrophe.

Lies and claptrap

No one wants to hear about the State of the Union speech (SOTUS). Full of bluff and bluster…lies and claptrap — all of them are best forgotten, and fast.

But we return to last week’s SOTUS, as to the site of a murder, not to bury the corpse but to praise him.

For there lies DJT…Donald John Trump…slain. Like Caesar, smitten in the Capitol, but by his own hand.

Our guess is that he will never rise again. A further guess is that he will take the nation down with him; we will look at those dots tomorrow.

The problem with his SOTUS was that it failed to mention anything that might be meaningful or helpful. That is, it avoided any mention of the real state of the union.

Who would report on a company and fail to mention that it was $22 trillion in debt…and was, at the time, losing money at the rate of approximately $100 billion per month…and that it had no plans — or even hope — of cutting its losses or heading off a monumental debt crisis?

Who would assess the state of a country without reference to the fact that it was slipping in every measure that matters — wealth per capita, business startups, patents, freedom, equality, and the integrity of its institutions?

What kind of a Commander in Chief would describe brave and heroic achievements from more than half a century ago, but lack the courage to confront an ongoing pattern of wasted lives and wasted trillions spent on military adventures with no coherent strategy, no possibility of victory, and no foreseeable end?

Alas, Mr Donald J Trump is that kind of guy.

Last great opportunity

And yet, it might have been so different. It was he who called Pentagon spending ‘crazy’. He said his predecessors had created a ‘big, fat, ugly bubble’ in U.S. stocks. He said he saw the decline of the US and offered to make it great again.

And so…last week, it was DJT’s last great opportunity to put his cards on the table. It was a chance to validate his campaign promises…to bring some sense of purpose to his administration…and to his life.

Born with a silver spoon in his mouth, and taught by Roy Cohn, one of the sleaziest scalawags in US political history, and held back by neither scruple, dignity, or peer pressure, Mr Trump is unique in White House history.

No one expected Barack Obama to turn the tables on the insiders. Nor Hillary Clinton. Nor George Bush. They were all insiders themselves. But Trump? He was right again, in a way, saying that ‘only he’ could fix the system.

He spent his whole life as an outsider — ridiculed and disparaged by the elite — preparing for it. Lying about his wealth, shamelessly building his brand, making a public spectacle of himself in newspapers, magazines, and on TV…and for what?

And then, against all odds, he won the world’s elected office. It was a remarkable achievement by a remarkable man. Trump defied them all — the party bosses…the pundits…the pollsters. And he won.

And wouldn’t it all be worth it…all the sacrifice and buffoonery…if he could one day stand on the podium and nudge the nation, even just a little, in the right direction?

Presidential affliction

But that is the problem with politics. If you want to be elected, you have to pretend to care about people you’ve never met, and greet total strangers as if they were long lost friends.

So, too, you must dissemble about everything: You claim to have solutions to problems you don’t understand in the slightest…identify enemies who’ve done you no harm…and offer to rip off someone, somewhere, sometime in the future so you can pay off the cronies and zombies you need to get you elected today.

You have no time to think seriously about how a government should work…or what makes for a peaceful, prosperous society. Who would care anyway?

All you have left is the claptrap and lies of campaign slogans and stump speeches. And by the time you get to the White House, so much time and energy has been spent acting like a fool, that you’re no longer acting. You have become the jackass you pretended to be on the campaign trail.

This is a syndrome that has afflicted every president, to a greater or lesser extent, at least since Calvin Coolidge. Even Mr Trump, for all his strength of character, couldn’t resist.

And so, his SOTUS took off like a rocket, soared into the clouds of America’s Great Past and sank into the swamp of America’s tawdry present…leaving not a trace of dignity, honour, or intelligence floating on the surface.

That is the Swamp Mr Trump pledged to drain. That is the Swamp that runs the country…and that is the Swamp that Mr Trump couldn’t escape, even if he wanted to…

…Stay tuned.


Bill Bonner


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