Friday, June 28, 2019


"The nature of the private equity activity is such that it really isn’t a bubble that bursts. Because if you’re running a large private equity fund and you lock up $20 billion for five or longer years and you buy businesses which are not priced daily, as a practical matter — even if you do a poor job, it’s going to take many years before the score is put up on the score board, and it takes many years, in most cases, for people to get out of the private equity fund even if they wished to earlier.... The investors can’t leave and the scorecard is lacking for a long time. What will slow down the activity — or what could slow down the activity — is if yields on junk bonds became much higher than yields on high-grade bonds. Right now the spread between yields on junk bonds and high-grade bonds is down to a very low level, and history has shown that periodically that spread widens quite dramatically. That will slow down the deals, but it won’t cause the investors to get their money back." --Warren Buffett (2007)

Jony Ive Leaves Apple, Ive’s Legacy, The Post-Ive Apple - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

Nudgestock 2019: Gerd Gigerenzer - Less is more: Decision making under uncertainty (video) [H/T @mikedariano] (LINK)
Related book: Risk Savvy: How to Make Good Decisions
Oaktree Insights: Are There Still Winners in a Maturing Real Estate Cycle? (LINK)

Have Power, Respect Power, and Use Power Wisely - by Ray Dalio (LINK)

The Massive ‘Pig Ebola’ Epidemic Will Give Trump Big Leverage In His Trade Standoff With China - by J. Kyle Bass and Daniel Babich (LINK)

The Attention Diet - by Mark Manson (LINK)

The side of Paul Allen I wish more people knew about - by Bill Gates (LINK)

The Tim Ferriss Show (podcast): #375: Josh Waitzkin — How to Cram 2 Months of Learning into 1 Day (LINK)

Revisionist History Podcast: The Tortoise and the Hare (LINK)

Value Investing with Legends Podcast: Investing with Curiosity [with Christopher Davis] (LINK)

Five Good Questions Podcast: Gautam Baid - The Joys of Compounding (LINK)

EdgeCast (podcast): Barbara Tversky - The Geometry of Thought (LINK)
Related book: Mind in Motion: How Action Shapes Thought
Nature Podcast: Nature PastCast, June 1876 (LINK)
According to the fables of early explorers, the gorilla was a terrible, man-eating monster. It was also thought to be man’s closest relative in the animal kingdom. Naturally, scientists and the public alike wanted to see these fierce beasts for themselves. But in the mid-nineteenth century, as the evolution debate heated up, getting a live gorilla to Europe from Africa was extremely difficult. In 1876, the pages of Nature report the arrival in England of a young specimen.
North Atlantic Right Whales Are Dying in Horrific Ways - by Ed Yong (LINK)

Notes on the book Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing (LINK) [This book is also fantastic as an audiobook.]

 "Man has known for a long time that getting too enchanted with the trappings of power is counterproductive. The Roman emperor that’s most remembered as presiding over a period of great felicity was Marcus Aurelius, who was totally against the trappings of power even though he had them all — he had all the power. So I think all these things can be abused, and I think the best way to tackle a subject is to provide examples of contrary behavior." --Charlie Munger (2007)

Wednesday, June 26, 2019


"I’ve probably had a hundred ideas of things that should be shorted, and I would say that almost every one of them have turned out to be correct. And I’ll bet if I’d tried to do it and make money out of it, I probably would have lost money, I would have had no fun, and the opportunity cost, as Charlie said, would have been enormous. Because if somebody’s running something that’s semi-fraudulent, they’re probably pretty good at it and they’re working full time at it and they’ve succeeded for a while and they may keep succeeding. And if they succeed and you go in at X and it goes to 5X, you know, all you’re hoping after a while it that it goes back to X again or something of the sort. It’s a very tough psychological game to play. Few people may be well-suited for it. I would never put any money with a short fund, but not because I would think it would be ethically wrong. I just think they’re unlikely to make money." --Warren Buffett (2006)

Broyhill Asset Management's ValueX Vail presentation on KAR Auction Services (LINK)

My View On: Student Debt Forgiveness - by Cullen Roche (LINK)

The American Retreat, Part I: Oil - by Peter Zeihan (LINK)

Crazy/Genius Podcast: How Has Netflix Changed Entertainment? (LINK)

a16z Podcast: Stories from the Frontlines of Synthetic Fraud (LINK)

"It is one thing to set up a mathematical model that appears to explain everything. But when we face the struggle of daily life, of constant trial and error, the ambiguity of the facts as well as the power of the human heartbeat can obliterate the model in short order." --Peter L. Bernstein (Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk)

Tuesday, June 25, 2019


"For every asset, there’s a price that’s low enough to make the risk palatable . . . Low price is the remedy for everything." --Howard Marks [Source]

Bill Gates speaks with David Rubenstein (video) [H/T Will] (LINK)

Dara Khosrowshahi speaks with David Rubenstein (video) (LINK)

There And Back Again: A Value Investor’s Tale (LINK)

Facebook, Libra, and the Long Game - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

Lessons From the VC Who's Seen It All Before (LINK)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Jesse Livermore – The Search for the Truth with the Anonymous Master (LINK)

Acquired Podcast: The Slack DPO (LINK)

Monarch Butterflies Reared in Captivity Lack a Crucial Ability - by Ed Yong (LINK)

The Last of Its Kind - by Ed Yong (LINK)
The biologist David Sischo has a tragic assignment: keeping vigil over a species’ sole survivor, then marking its extinction in real time.

Monday, June 24, 2019


"A strategic buyer is some guy that pays too much. And he wants to justify it, so he says it’s strategic. I have never understood being a strategic buyer. Every time somebody calls me up and says, 'We think, maybe, you’re the logical strategic buyer for that,' I hang up faster than Charlie would.... The idea that we’re going to find a business to buy from some guy who, from the moment he bought it a few years ago, has been thinking, 'How do I get out of this thing?' 'What do I do to have...those figures for a couple years look a certain way so that I can get the maximum amount in a couple years?' We’re just not going to make any attractive buys there. We won’t trust the figures. What we like is a business where the guy before was running with the idea of running it a hundred years, and taking care of the business in every way possible and was not contemplating sale, but, for one reason or another, finally needs to monetize the company. " --Warren Buffett (2006)

Bill Gates on Startups, Investing and Solving The World's Hardest Problems (video) [H/T Linc] (LINK)
You know, in the software world, in particular for platforms, these are winner-take-all markets. So, you know, the greatest mistake ever is the whatever mismanagement I engaged in that caused Microsoft not to be what Android is, [meaning] Android is the standard non-Apple phone form platform. That was a natural thing for Microsoft to win. 
It really is winner take all. If you’re there with half as many apps or 90% as many apps, you’re on your way to complete doom. There’s room for exactly one non-Apple operating system, and what’s that worth? $400 billion that would be transferred from company G [Google] to company M [Microsoft]. 
And it’s amazing to me, having made one of the greatest mistakes of all time — and there was this antitrust lawsuit and various things that, you know, our other assets, Windows, Office,  are still very strong. So we are a leading company. If we got that one right, we would be the company. But oh well. 
So this idea that just small differences can magnify themselves doesn’t exist for a lot of businesses. You know, if you’re a service business, it doesn’t exist. But for software platforms, it’s absolutely gigantic. And so that’s partly where you have the mentality of every night you think, ‘Am I screwing this up?’ And eventually, we did screw up a super important one. [Source]
Leithner Letter No. 237-240 (26 July – 26 October 2019) (LINK)

Indexing Giant Vanguard Examines a Push Into Private Equity ($) (LINK)

SeriesFest: Season 5 | Innovation Talk with Ted Sarandos & Mike Fries (video excerpt) [H/T @GosaliaRishi] (LINK)
Picking content, and working with the creative community, is a very human function. The data doesn't help you on anything in that process. It does help you, like I said, size the investment.... It's 70-80% art, and 20-30% science in terms of sizing it.
The World Is Full of Innovation More Important Than Ad Algorithms - by Ashlee Vance (LINK)

How I Built This Podcast: Yelp: Jeremy Stoppelman (LINK)

Odd Lots Podcast: One of Hong Kong’s Most Famous Investors Gives His Vision of the City’s Future (LINK)

EconTalk Podcast: Eric Topol on Deep Medicine (LINK)
Jared Diamond on the Making Sense podcast (LINK)
Related book: Upheaval: Turning Points for Nations in Crisis
Curiosity Detects Unusually High Methane Levels (LINK)

Sunday, June 23, 2019


Tom Russo on WealthTrack (video) (LINK)

Bernard Arnault: ‘I always liked being number one’ ($) (LINK)

Why Investor Mario Cibelli Likes Grubhub Stock, Becle, and e.l.f. Beauty ($) (LINK)

Book review: “Merger Masters – Tales of Arbitrage” (LINK)

Grant’s Current Yield Podcast: Research Triangle (LINK)
Rob Arnott, founder and chairman of the board of Research Affiliates, LLC, calls in to assess conditions and opportunities around the world.
The Acquirers Podcast: Peter Rabover talks concentrated microcap investing and special situations (LINK)

Five Good Questions Podcast: Ashley Goodall - Nine Lies About Work (LINK)

Why You Should Study Philosophy - by Ryan Holiday (LINK)

TED Talk: The architectural secrets of the world's ancient wonders | Brandon Clifford (LINK)

Friday, June 21, 2019


"Ben Graham said long ago that you’re neither right nor wrong because people agree with you or disagree with you. In other words, being contrarian has no special virtue over being a trend follower. You’re right because your facts and reasoning are right. So all you do is you try to make sure that the facts you have are correct.... And then once you have the facts, you’ve got to think through what they mean. And you don’t take a public opinion survey. You don’t pay attention to things that are unimportant. What you’re looking for [are] things that are important and knowable. If something’s important but unknowable, forget it. I mean, it may be important to know whether somebody’s going to drop a nuclear weapon tomorrow but it’s unknowable. And there are all kinds of things are that knowable but are unimportant. In focusing on business and investment decisions, you try to narrow it down to the things that are knowable and important, and then you decide whether you have information of sufficient value that—compared to price and all that—will cause you to act. What others are doing means nothing." --Warren Buffett (2006)

Unbreakable - by Ian Cassel (LINK)

Fraud in the Bull Market videos [H/T @colemanrhawkins] (LINK)

Bethany McLean Has Something To Say, and You Should Listen (video) (LINK) [The first episode of McLean's new podcast is free, HERE.]

Hayman’s Kyle Bass on trouble in Hong Kong (video) (LINK)

Your Employee Health Plan Could Soon Look Like Your 401(k) ($) (LINK)

Trump to Issue Executive Order on Health-Care Price Transparency ($) (LINK)

A candid conversation with EA's Andrew Wilson at E3 2019 (LINK)

Jeff Bezos took another veiled shot at Elon Musk, arguing that reaching Mars is an 'illusion' without going via the moon (LINK)

Are millennials really growing horns from using their phones? - by John Hawks (LINK)

Thursday, June 20, 2019


David Sackler Pleads His Case on the Opioid Epidemic - by Bethany McLean (LINK)

The Future Isn’t What It Used to Be ($) [H/T @BrentBeshore] (LINK)

Your Professional Decline Is Coming (Much) Sooner Than You Think [H/T @morganhousel] (LINK)

The Appeal of 21st Century Stoicism (LINK)
Related book: How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius
On Crypto and Its Implications for American Technology Innovation (LINK)
Editor’s Note: This testimony was delivered by a16z managing partner (and former chairman of the board of the National Venture Capital Association) Scott Kupor to the House Agriculture Committee as part of their public hearings on “Cryptocurrencies: Oversight of New Assets in the Digital Age” in July 2018. 
Stanford’s Robert Sapolsky Demystifies Depression, Which, Like Diabetes, Is Rooted in Biology (2009 video) (LINK)

Revisionist History Podcast: Puzzle Rush (LINK)

Stuff You Should Know Podcast: What happened to the Neanderthals? (LINK)

Narlugas Are Real - by Ed Yong (LINK)

Paul Volcker on the Fed's dual mandate

From his book, Keeping At It:
In 1977 the Federal Reserve Act was amended to require that the central bank "maintain long run growth of the monetary and credit aggregates commensurate with the economy's long run potential to increase production, so as to promote the goals of maximum employment, stable prices, and moderate long-term interest rates." Reasonable enough as an aspiration, but here we have the origin of what has since been interpreted as the "dual mandate." 
The following year, Congress passed the Full Employment and Balance Growth Act, known more widely as the "Humphrey-Hawkins Act" for the senator and congressman who sponsored the legislation. The new law had more than a bit of a monetarist flavor. It required the Federal Reserve chairman to report to the Congress twice a year on plans for monetary policy, setting out the board's targets for the growth in money and credit. That indeed was a specific mandate. It also went on to incorporate the previous less specific language about the "goals" of maximum employment, stable prices, and the now conveniently forgotten moderate long-term interest rates. A key issue for monetary policy is the degree to which that so-called dual mandate leads to clarity or confusion in the operating decisions of the Federal Reserve Board and Open Market Committee. I fear the latter.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019


"You do not have to have tons of good ideas in this business. You just have a good idea that’s worth a ton, occasionally." --Warren Buffett (2006)

"The concept that you’re likely to find just one thing where it will make 20 percent per annum and you just sit back for the next 40 years, that tends to be dreamland. And in the real world, you have to find something that you can understand that’s the best you have available. And once you’ve found the best thing, then you measure everything against that because it’s your opportunity cost. That’s the way small sums of money should be invested. And the trick, of course, is getting enough expertise that your opportunity cost — meaning your default option, which is still pretty good — is very high... Most people aren’t going to find thousands of things that are equally good; they’re going to find a few things where one or two of them are way better than anything else they know. And the right way to think about investing is to act thinking about your best opportunity cost."  --Charlie Munger (2006)

Why The American Shoe Disappeared And Why It's So Hard To Bring It Back [H/T Linc] (LINK)

Acquired Podcast: The Zoom IPO (LINK)

a16z Podcast: The History and Future of Machine Learning (LINK)

Conversations with Tyler (podcast): Hal Varian on Taking the Academic Approach to Business (LINK)

TED Talk: How synthetic biology could wipe out humanity -- and how we can stop it | Rob Reid (LINK)

Two Earth-sized planets found in a nearby star's habitable zone! - by Phil Plait (LINK)

Tuesday, June 18, 2019


"Investing is really not complicated. I mean, the basic framework for it is simple. Now, you have to work at it some to find the best pockets of undervaluation.... But you didn’t have to have a high IQ—you didn’t have to have lots of investment smarts to buy junk bonds in 2002 or even to do some of the stuff that was available when LTCM got in trouble. You really just had to have the courage of your convictions. You had to have the willingness to do something when everybody else was petrified. But that was true in 1974 when we were buying stocks at very, very, very low multiples of earnings. It wasn’t that anybody didn’t know that they were cheap. They were just paralyzed for one reason or another." --Warren Buffett (2006)

"When you have a huge get a lot of weird behavior.... And if you can be wise when everybody else is going crazy, sure, there will still be opportunities. But that may give you long, dull stretches if that’s your strategy." --Charlie Munger (2006)

Stay in the Game (LINK)

Buy and Hold: Simple, NOT Easy - by Vishal Khandelwal (LINK)

While Studying Bonds, Why Credit Rating Analysts Should Keep an Eye on the Stock Price (LINK)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Chuck Akre – The Three-Legged Stool (LINK)

To Hack or Not To Hack - by Peter Zeihan (LINK)

The Knowledge Project Podcast: Leading Above the Line (LINK)

Revisiting Benjamin Franklin and Socrates (LINK)

"The investor trying to buy right and hold on could buy as many different stocks as appealed to him. The difference is not in the focussing of investment money but in the intent of the buyer. The trader believes that in a swift-moving, rapidly changing world, with visibility always limited, he can make a series of commitments with better chance of success than trying to decide which companies will do well for the next twenty years. The investor dedicated to buying right and holding on picks managements, products, and processes he thinks able to cope with the unforeseeable as it hoves into view. " --Thomas Phelps (via 100 to 1 in the Stock Market)

Monday, June 17, 2019


"More money is made by thinking than is ever made by buying and selling." --Adrian Cantwell (via Asia's Investment Prophets)

Mohnish Pabrai’s Lecture and Q&A with students of Peking University (Guanghua School of Mgmt.): “Great Businesses vs. Great Investments” (video) (LINK)

Mohnish Pabrai's Webcast Q&A Session with Students at London Business School (video) (LINK)

What Yogi Berra Would Have Said About This Bull Market - by Jason Zweig ($) (LINK)

GE’s Larry Culp Faces Ultimate CEO Test in Trying to Save a Once-Great Company (LINK)

James Grant: The Fed will cut in June (video) (LINK)

Choosing the Wrong Lane in the Race to 5G (LINK)

A Few Thoughts On Public Speaking - by Morgan Housel (LINK)

What Really Happened to Malaysia’s Missing Airplane - by William Langewiesche (LINK)

32 Thoughts From a 32-Year-Old - by Ryan Holiday (LINK)

EconTalk Podcast: Anja Shortland on Kidnap (LINK)
Related book: Kidnap: Inside the Ransom Business
The Peter Attia Drive Podcast: #58 – AMA with sleep expert, Matthew Walker, Ph.D. (LINK)

Book of the day [H/T Claire Barnes]: The Purpose of Capital

Sunday, June 16, 2019

David Abrams on catalysts and growth

We buy things with what we call a hard catalyst; so some kind of event that's going to close the gap between what you bought it at and what it's worth.  
We also buy things where there's no catalyst; so we're just owning businesses.  
In the first category, if there's a catalyst, we don't need that much growth. We need to buy it cheap and get out.  
In the second category, where there's no catalyst, we absolutely need growth. And now the growth can come in all kinds of ways. It doesn't have to come through increased revenues, although a lot of times it does. It can come from running operations more efficiently. It can come from acquisitions. It can come from buying back shares really cheap. But if there's no catalyst, we absolutely need growth.

Friday, June 14, 2019


"If something is too hard to do, we look for something that isn’t too hard to do. What could be more obvious than that?" --Charlie Munger (2006)

Value Investing with Legends Podcast: Applying a Fundamental and Value-Oriented Approach to Investing [with David Abrams] (LINK)

Latticework of Mental Models: The Rashomon Effect (LINK)

Meatless Future or Vegan Delusions? The Beyond Meat Valuation - by Aswath Damodaran (LINK)

Animal Spirits - by Lewis Johnson (LINK)

Freakonomics Radio (podcast): Long-Term Thinking in a Start-Up Town (LINK)

Exponent Podcast: Game of Phones (LINK)

a16z podcast: AI and Your Doctor, Today and Tomorrow (LINK)
Related book: Deep Medicine: How Artificial Intelligence Can Make Healthcare Human Again - by Eric Topol
Wernher von Braun and The American Moonshot (LINK)

The salty ocean of Europa: Table salt found on Jupiter's moon - by Phil Plait (LINK)

Inside the Cultish Dreamworld of Augusta National (LINK)

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Howard Marks Memo: This Time It's Different

Link to Memo: This Time It's Different
In good times, we often see the notion "this time it's different" work its way into the marketplace as investors seek to rationalize higher asset prices and continued upward movement. Today this sentiment is expressed in contexts ranging from questioning the prospect of a recession altogether to supporting the high valuations of tech companies despite their current profitless state. In his latest memo, Howard Marks discusses the outlook for nine such theories. It would truly have to be different this time around for them to hold.


"It’s pretty hard in a declining business to buy things cheap enough to compensate for the decline." --Warren Buffett (2006

What’s Warren Buffett Up to in Europe? [H/T Linc] (LINK)

The Meb Faber Show (podcast): John Huber - Stock Prices Fluctuate Much More Than The Underlying Businesses (LINK)

Paul Tudor Jones on JUST Capital, U.S. Recession, and Gold (video) (LINK)

Kyle Bass Sees Hong Kong Politics 'Speeding Up' Pressure on Dollar Peg (video) (LINK)
Related letters from Bass: 1) "The Quiet Panic in Hong Kong"; 2) "Trouble in Hong Kong- Part Deux"
Leonardo da Vinci’s Huge Notebook Collections, the Codex Forster, Now Digitized in High-Resolution: Explore Them Online (LINK)

For Kindle readers, there are a couple titles of note currently on sale:

Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet

Junkyard Planet: Travels in the Billion-Dollar Trash Trade

Tuesday, June 11, 2019


Mary Meeker’s 2019 internet trends report | Code 2019 (SLIDES, VIDEO) [More videos from the Code Conference can be found HERE.]

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Jerry Neumann – Why Venture is Hard (LINK)

Capital Allocators Podcast: Patrick O’Shaughnessy – O’Shaughnessy Asset Management (LINK)

The Incredible Creative Power of the Index Card - by Ryan Holiday (LINK)

Edge #542: The Brain Is Full of Maps - A Talk By Freeman Dyson (LINK)

Monday, June 10, 2019


"With all of these new helpers in the world, they talk about doing deals. That is not the mindset at Berkshire. We are trying to welcome partners. It’s a total different mindset. The guy who’s doing a deal, he wants to do the deal and unwind the deal and — not too far ahead and make a large profit, et cetera, and that’s not our mindset at all. We like the things that we can buy and that never leave us, and we like the relationships that last and are fruitful, not just for us, but for the people working there and the customers and everybody else." --Charlie Munger (2006)

Tech and Antitrust - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

How Aldi, a brutally efficient grocery chain, is upending America's supermarkets [H/T @pcordway] (LINK)

50 Things I’ve Learned in the First 90 Days of Running a Company [H/T @BrentBeshore] (LINK)

Meet the Money Whisperer to the Super-Rich N.B.A. Elite (LINK)

Secrets of Sand Hill Road (Venture Capital and How to Get It) — Know Venture Capital Before You Get Married to a Venture Capitalist - by Tren Griffin (LINK)
Related book: Secrets of Sand Hill Road
How I Built This Podcast: Allbirds: Tim Brown & Joey Zwillinger (LINK)

Venture Stories Podcast: A Deep Dive on Education with Dani Grant (LINK)

Dan Carlin's Hardcore History: Addendum (podcast): EP8 Caesar at Hastings (LINK)

‘Drunken Monkey’ Hypothesis: Was Booze an Advantage For Our Ancestors? (LINK)


Markets can be weird and irrational stat of the day (via @charliebilello from last Friday):
5-Year Bond Yields, June 2015...
Greece: 17%
US: 1.75% 
5-Year Bond Yields, Today...
Greece: 1.68%
US: 1.82%

Friday, June 7, 2019


"I think that the chances we’ll have another 60 or 70 years with no nuclear devices used on purpose is pretty close to zero. So, I think you’re right to worry about it, but I don’t, myself, think there’s much that any of us can do about it, except be as sensible as we can and take the consequences as they come." --Charlie Munger (2006

"The only thing you can do about it — but you only have one vote — is to elect leaders who are terribly conscious of the problem and who devote a significant part of their thought and energy into minimizing it. You can’t eliminate it. The genie is out of the bottle. And you would like to have the leaders of the major countries of the world regarding it as a primary focus. Actually, in the 2004 campaign, I think that both candidates said it was the major problem of our time. But they probably suffer from the same feeling that I do, that it’s very hard to address." --Warren Buffett (2006

Excerpt of Jeff Bezos' fireside chat at re:MARS 2019 (video) (LINK) [I'll post the full video on the blog when/if it becomes available.]

Amazon Private Label Brands [H/T @emilyleldridge] (LINK)

Recode Media Podcast: Matthew Ball on Amazon vs Apple vs Netflix vs Disney, and how he built a digital media career by writing for free (LINK)
Related articles: Netflix Misunderstandings, Parts 1-7; "Nine Reasons Why Disney+ Will Succeed (And Why Four Criticisms are Overhyped)
The Deal Hidden in Your 401(k) - by Jason Zweig ($) (LINK)
For many investors, the Roth 401(k) offers some distinct advantages. But your plan administrator may not be steering you the right way.
Stanley Druckenmiller on CNBC (video) (LINK)

JPMorgan's London Whale Saga Ends Quietly as Fed Drops Its Order (LINK)

Did James make the right Final Jeopardy bet? - By Tim Urban (LINK)

D-Day: An American Legacy (narrated by Jocko Willink) (video) (LINK)


I visited Normandy and the D-Day beaches for the first time last year (details via my better half HERE). One of the more striking things to me was the length of beach the soldiers had to cross to get to land. It's a trip a highly recommend, and it's something I think can appeal and move even those not inclined to normally study history in their spare time.

Thursday, June 6, 2019


"We don’t play big trends. We don’t think about demographic trends or anything of the sort.... Big trends, they just don’t mean that much. There’s too much money to be made from year to year to think about things that take decades to manifest themselves." --Warren Buffett (2006

Brilliant stock picker John Neff, who ran Vanguard's Windsor Fund and built Penn’s endowment, dies at 87 (LINK)

Terry Smith presents the full Fundsmith FEET 2019 Annual Shareholders' Meeting (video) (LINK)

A 2017 paper from Ernst & Young: "Getting ROIC right" [H/T @_inpractise] (LINK)
Related paper: "Calculating Return on Invested Capital" (Mauboussin, Callahan); Related book (2006): Cash Return on Capital Invested: Ten Years of Investment Analysis with the CROCI Economic Profit Model
The Joe Rogan Experience (podcast): #1309 - Naval Ravikant (LINK)
Related podcast: Naval: How to Get Rich: Every Episode
The Ezra Klein Show (podcast): Michael Lewis reads my mind (LINK)

Conversations with Tyler (podcast): Russ Roberts on Life as an Economics Educator (LINK)

Standard Deviations Podcast: Brent Beshore - Building a “Baby Berkshire” (LINK)

Crazy/Genius Podcast: Influencers: Frauds or the Future of Online Commerce? (LINK)

Venture Stories Podcast: A Deep Dive On InsureTech with Karn Saroya and Sheel Mohnot (LINK)

Solvable Podcast: Homelessness is Solvable (LINK)
Malcolm Gladwell talks to Rosanne Haggerty about ending homelessness for everyone. Forever.
Kevin Kelly on Still Untitled: The Adam Savage Project Podcast (LINK)

AI: Hype vs. Reality Podcast: AI On The Job (LINK)

Humane: A New Agenda for Tech (video) [H/T @harari_yuval] (LINK)

The Deep Sea Is Full of Plastic, Too (LINK)

Tuesday, June 4, 2019


"It’s not what you buy that determines your results, it’s what you pay for it." --Howard Marks (Mastering the Market Cycle)

Crypto Pioneer Pays $4.57 Million for Lunch With Warren Buffett (LINK)

The Couple Who Feds Say Scammed Berkshire Hathaway for Millions (LINK)

Apple’s Audacity - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

The controversy over WeWork’s $47 billion valuation and impending IPO, explained (LINK)

Stanley Druckenmiller at The Economic Club of New York (video) (LINK)

The Absolute Return Letter - June 2019: The Cost of Rising Populism (LINK)

A ‘Bridge’ to China, and Her Family’s Business, in the Trump Cabinet (LINK)
Elaine Chao has boosted the profile of her family’s shipping company, which benefits from industrial policies in China that are roiling the Trump administration.
A Massacre, Erased [H/T Linc] (LINK)
China tried to repress the memory of the brutal crackdown in Tiananmen Square. Thirty years later, Beijing is still terrified of its legacy.  
Related articles to the above: 1) In China, I'd Be Dead - by Li Lu (1989); 2) Drama of Li Lu's Life Recounted in Documentary Film (1995); Related book: Moving the Mountain: From the Cultural Revolution to Tiananmen Square - by Li Lu
The Peter Attia Drive Podcast: #56 - Jocko Willink (Part II of II) (LINK)

The Mutation Meant to Help the CRISPR Babies Could Be Harmful - by Sarah Zhang (LINK)

Science Friday Podcast: SciFri Extra: Remembering Murray Gell-Mann (LINK)

TED Talk: "Everything happens for a reason" -- and other lies I've loved | Kate Bowler (LINK)
Related book: Everything Happens for a Reason: And Other Lies I've Loved

Sunday, June 2, 2019


"In 1928 and 1929 there occurred a wholesale and disastrous relaxation of the standards of safety previously observed by the reputable houses of issue. This was shown in the sale of many new offerings of inferior grade, aided in part by questionable methods of presenting the facts to the public. The general collapse in values affected these unsound and unseasoned issues with particular severity, so that the losses suffered by investors in many of these flotations have been little short of appalling." --Benjamin Graham and David Dodd (1934 edition of Security Analysis)

Bill Gates: Grilling and chilling with Warren Buffett (video) (LINK)

Five Lessons from History - by Morgan Housel (LINK)

Buy And Verify - by Ian Cassel (LINK)

Why Your Mortgage is So Complicated: The History and Opportunity of the Modern Mortgage (video) (LINK)

Risks and Opportunities in the Battery Supply Chain (LINK)

The end of mobile - by Benedict Evans (LINK)

Investing in the Podcast Ecosystem in 2019 (LINK)

What Amazon Might Want With Boost Mobile (LINK)

Dyson Patent Applications Offer Hints at Its Electric Car (LINK)

Value Investing with Legends: Overcoming Biases for Effective Decision-Making (with Michael Mauboussin) (LINK)

a16z Podcast: The Economics of Expensive Medicines (LINK)

AI: Hype vs. Reality Podcast: AI That Drives (LINK)
Self-driving cars: the greatest automotive industry disruption since Henry Ford’s Model-T assembly line… just around the corner. Right? That’s the hype—but is it reality? Are we mere blocks away from our neighborhood streets and freeways being filled with autonomous cars? Find out in the premiere episode of AI: Hype vs. Reality, a new podcast and video series in which Jessica Chobot, veteran host of Nerdist News and Bizarre States, puts present-day artificial intelligence technology to the test in real-world situations. And separates the hype from reality.
Masters in Business Podcast: Scott Galloway Discusses the Algebra of Happiness (LINK)
Related book: The Algebra of Happiness
Freakonomics Radio: 379. How to Change Your Mind (LINK)

Why Hundreds of Puffins Washed Up Dead on an Alaskan Beach - by Ed Yong (LINK)

Outspoken Oncology Podcast: Physician, Scientist, and Author Siddhartha Mukherjee (LINK)
Related books: 1) The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer; 2) The Gene: An Intimate History 
Related documentary: Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies (3-part Ken Burns documentary, and free for Amazon Prime members)
Science Friday Podcast: SciFri Extra: A Relatively Important Eclipse (LINK)
This week marks the 100th anniversary of an eclipse that forever changed physics and our understanding of the universe. 
In May 1919, scientists set out for Sobral, Brazil, and Príncipe, an island off the west coast of Africa, to photograph the momentarily starry sky during a total eclipse. Their scientific aim was to test whether the sun’s gravity would indeed bend light rays from faraway stars, as predicted by Einstein’s theory of general relativity. After analyzing the data from the brief minutes of darkness, they declared Einstein correct. 
Carlo Rovelli, physicist and author, tells Ira the story.