haha yes, tons of folks were perplexed by this cover.
Someone told me a week or so ago, right, that the stock market was doing strange stuff --
that maybe Asia had taken a big knock?
With a picture as messy as this one, it's tough to know where to begin.
However, a good place with this specific image is taking a look at which pieces are shown in color,
vs. those which are shown in black-and-white.
To me, black-and-white signifies age, decay, death, the past, "glory days" that actually didn't exist, economic ruin and perhaps even austerity.
I know a lot of photos from the great wars were in black-and-white, maybe even some of the Asian conflicts too?
I notice that a few of the politicians are shown with faces/bodies black-and-white whereas their suits (! a slur or pun?) are shown in color.
I take this to mean that it is anticipated, some other personality (higher order) will assume power in these roles. I.e. Obama, Putin, Merkel; all depicted as strong personalities but in fact mere placeholders for real tyrants to come. 'Course I could be quite wrong.
I notice above the nuke cloud on the right, is a "divided earth" cartoon with quite racist features. The stoic face on the left side with Africa as the nose, with Asian eyes, kind of looks like the Arab world, trying to ignore the aggressive other half, which looks kind of like a mean Caucasian face with perhaps a Jewish nose. It looks like a caricature a fellow trainee drew in tech school, of a student in our classroom haha.
But less funny is the fact that the mean face is watching the placid young face on the left with envy and hate.
Perhaps it's the Naval-strong Western powers eyeing the oil-rich easy pickings of the middle east with no success.
The text on top I notice is in Asian language, I should know which ones, looks maybe like Korean, Japanese? I'm not 100% sure.
What does the BP indicate, a price in British pounds? In the opposing corner on bottom left of magazine, we see the British flag topping a drum set,
with American flag inferior. Also it says 50th. Indicating the 50th year of some sort of pact or cooperative effort.
Not sure how many years Economist has been running.
They seem to be indicating a tongue-in-cheek trend toward Asianizing.
Westernization used to be "the big thing" (20 years ago lol) but if you look closely there are at least 4 Asian faces shown in color,
one young face is eating noodles, suggesting a time of plenty for Asia, also suggested by the fact so much of the top half of cover is written in Asian text. The west and countries who followed warmongering policies are pretty much shown in ashes and as we said before, black-and-white i.e. austerity.
The drone carrying a yellow package saying "books" is Orwellian/Bradbury-ish.
Yellow containers usually carry needles, lol, medical supplies, military equipment, etc pressurized cannisters, you name it.
Generally hazardous things as in nature (wasps are often yellow).
I think maybe this is a tongue in cheek criticism of how there's been this huge shift toward electronic media,
even reading on phones and computers, and people are hardly smart enough to see, they should be keeping back some books.
In anticipation of the possibility, the internet might encounter some sort of massive deletion.
Books would be contraband worth their weight in gold, to make up for the deficit in practical knowledge.
Many books showing how to have been subtly removed from libraries and replaced with computers and crappy vampire novels.
Just like in the book Fahrenheit 451, we are being bled dry of all real emotion and knowledge and past.
It's super creepy how the drone is not only "bookkeeping" but also book stealing.
The Churchhill V below the rocket launch is creepy too.
Is that a joke about Saturn V? There sure have been tons of rocket and space/plane accidents in the last year or so.
I'm not surprised that the Economist gurus put the nuke blast next to the rocket.
It might well have been meant to imply that some launches would fail and panic the market.
I know the USA in particular is an exporter of aerospace and commercial airline hardware.
But the same companies who market that stuff are now marketing weapons capable of destroying even the most sophisticated aircraft.
I doubt even the Blackbird could outrun a laser... food for thought.
We have entered a whole new stage of world war and the fact it's been announced publicly suggests there have already been incidents.
I don't think the companies would be telling everyone about the lasers being deployed if we weren't already in deep ****.
Not sure what Spider-Man indicates but see he along with a flying piggy bank are surely exiting the visible picture.
When the Western economy crashes, if this happens, our heroes will be suddenly absent.
However the strongman Panda shown dead center is standing firm and publicly sturdy.
Corny, yes? But he still perseveres - silly but not overblown, powerful but not an obvious giant,
gaining power from humble places i.e. agrarian places, widespread power base -- acceptance in the midst of posturing.
Japan depicted gaining wealth.
Batteries shown. Rare earths race affects who produces the best batteries and Japan/China are way ahead of most.
This explains a lot of the Islands conflicts between China/Japan/Russia.
The outstretched palms are less welcoming than warning.
As if to say "stay away don't look at the mess left over from our senseless wars and terrorism".
The Pied Piper, the child carrying an airplane, the frowning chinese bear,
the panic map, and the USA/UK drumset, makes me think of all the recent airliner accidents,
especially the ones in Asia, because there was foul play for sure.
The child is even more depressed now than the children after 9/11 but does not realize why.
His dreams of flying have been forever tainted by accident after accident,
and flying dreams used to be a good thing for kids. I doubt so much recently.
Singapore is shown in the midst of the colorful faces.
Suggesting trade. ALso nearby are some wealthy moguls in color.
Singapore might become a trade and tech hub for some reason in near future as Asia grows wealthier.
Napoleon is shown nearby perhaps suggesting France is in on this..
Not sure what the ClownFish near the pied piper are for.
Maybe investors who stay with aerospace investments even though people are getting stung.
Clownfish live inside the sea anemones but don't get stung because they have a thick coat of mucus over their scales.
I think maybe the clownfish are persistent investors whereas the rest of the market is panicking, kind of like 9/11 all over again.
Not too far from the pied piper's area is a masked man. not sure if a hacker, terrorist, backer, or what he is. scary huh.
The football-world motif near the chinese bear is certainly odd. Perhaps an indicator of Chinese influence on the stock market,
particularly if it should crash. it would be like kicking the football lol.
We shall see whether this silly bear is scary or friendly.
The Castrol racer next to the tortoise and Alice from Wonderland is certainly odd.
Not sure what it means either. Usually a tortoise is shown racing a rabbit, but the White Rabbit is nowhere to be seen.
Instead we have the strange arrows near the stoic Alice, who is looking up at the grinning Cheshire Cat that no-one else seems to see.
The fact his tree is growing out of Obama's leg suggests a bit of false cheer. Perhaps fakiness,
as if to say, "much ado about nothing, nothing at all" , Obama was a huge sensation, lasted for years,
but soon we're going to see some real turmoil and austerity that will make us look back at him,
and either blame him for knowing all along, or wish he could have had a third term LOL.
The tortoise is definitely going toward the batteries.
Perhaps there's an aspect of energy development where USA is so sadly behind that it would make taxpayers absolutely furious.
Perhaps because our countries wasted so much $$$$ on the wars for oil etc. instead of pursuing other advances,
we are going to be shut out of the next great booming economy unless we act SO fast.
I should know who the woman in the portrait is but it escapes me.
She is wearing similar clothing to Merkel and both are staring directly, sagely, at audience.
Suggesting longevity, silence, a master plan.
But they are dwarfed by the chaos and noise.
There is little room for grace or the growth of children in this picture.
Very scary and interesting if you ask me!