Friday, November 29, 2019


"It’s not any goal of ours to double the revenues or increase them 20 percent, even, or anything. We just try to do whatever comes along that makes sense. And if there’s a lot that comes along in one year that makes sense, we’ll do a lot. And if there’s nothing that comes along that makes sense, we’ll do nothing. So there’s a lot of accident in it." --Warren Buffett (1996)

Warren Buffett's latest attempt to put his cash to work is thwarted (LINK)

Chris Bloomstran of Semper Augustus Investments Group doesn't like the price being offered by Kyocera for the rest of AVX. He posted some thoughts and his letter to the CEO and Special Committee on Twitter, which you can also find HERE.

Mohnish Pabrai's Annual Talk at Boston College (video) (LINK)

Josh Wolfe's Lux 2019 Annual Meeting Talk (video) (LINK)

Paul Tudor Jones and Ray Dalio at the Greenwich Economic Forum earlier this month (video) [H/T Linc] (LINK)

The Greatest Value Investor You’ve Never Heard (LINK)

Risky Business - by Frank K. Martin (LINK)

The Complete Guide To Drilling (LINK)

Value Investing with Legends Podcast: Matthew McLennan - The Power of Selectivity and Patience (LINK)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Gavin Baker – Tech and Consumer Growth Investing (LINK)

Value: After Hours Podcast: Taylor, Brewster and Carlisle discuss Rentec, Chanos, and value (LINK)

Conversations with Tyler (podcast): Mark Zuckerberg Interviews Patrick Collison and Tyler Cowen on the Nature and Causes of Progress (LINK)

The Tim Ferriss Show (podcast): #398: Peter Attia, M.D. — Fasting, Metformin, Athletic Performance, and More (LINK)

The Beirut Banyan Podcast: 81: Nassim Nicholas Taleb & Local Solutions for Lebanon (LINK)

Origin Stories Podcast: 40: The Denisovans (LINK)

Tuesday, November 26, 2019


"To discover new things, you have to work on ideas that are good but non-obvious; if an idea is obviously good, other people are probably already working on it. One common way for a good idea to be non-obvious is for it to be hidden in the shadow of some mistaken assumption that people are very attached to." --Paul Graham

Novelty and Heresy - by Paul Graham (LINK)

Bill Gates on AI, Climate, Carbon Tax, Nuclear Power, China (video) (LINK)

Oaktree’s Marks on Global Economic Outlook, Recession (video) (LINK)

No More Gurus - by Morgan Housel (LINK)

EBITDA Definition Danger (LINK)

Infinite Loops Podcast with Jim O'Shaughnessy -- Behind the Curtains: Ramp Capital and Super Mugatu (LINK) [New podcast, available via Spotify]

Acquired Podcast: Disney, Plus (LINK)

Full Interview: Tom Hanks On ‘A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood’ (video) (LINK)

The World’s Biggest Heart Can Beat Just Twice a Minute - by Ed Yong (LINK)

Monday, November 25, 2019


"You can, of course, pay too much for even the best of businesses.... Investors making purchases in an overheated market need to recognize that it may often take an extended period for the value of even an outstanding company to catch up with the price they paid. A far more serious problem occurs when the management of a great company gets sidetracked and neglects its wonderful base business while purchasing other businesses that are so-so or worse. When that happens, the suffering of investors is often prolonged.... Loss of focus is what most worries Charlie and me when we contemplate investing in businesses that in general look outstanding. All too often, we've seen value stagnate in the presence of hubris or of boredom that caused the attention of managers to wander." --Warren Buffett (1996 Letter to Shareholders)

“You Don't Bring Bad News to the Cult Leader”: Inside the Fall of WeWork (LINK)

How Performance Reviews Can Kill Your Culture (LINK)

Venture Stories Podcast: Keith Rabois on How He Invests, Forming a Founding Team, and Funding “Ridiculous” Ideas (LINK)

How to Win in the Startup World — Mike Maples and Andy Rachleff (The Tim Ferriss Show podcast) (LINK)

The Plate Climatology Theory (video) (LINK)
A video that summarizes the building block principles of the Plate Climatology Theory and provides specific research proven examples supporting these principles.  The viewer will learn how geological forces affect or control climate and climate related events of Antarctica, the Arctic, El Nino's / La Nina's, so-called Ice Ages, or land volcanic eruptions.  
CBS This Morning Podcast: Becoming Friends with Mister Rogers [H/T @BrentBeshore] (LINK)
Related articles: 1) Can You Say...Hero? (1998); 2) My Friend Mister Rogers (2019) 


For Audible Members, the current Black Friday Week sale has many titles of note:


It's not included in the sale, but I also noticed that Damn Right: Behind the Scenes with Berkshire Hathaway Billionaire Charlie Munger is now on Audible.

Sunday, November 24, 2019


The Bus Ticket Theory of Genius - by Paul Graham (LINK)

It’s Slow Going, but Stuff Like Wheat and Oil Can Spice Up Your Returns - by Jason Zweig ($) (LINK)
The best time to get interested in an investing strategy is when its performance is at its worst. By that standard, commodities are starting to look intriguing.
Everyone Gets Paid in CBS-Viacom Except Shareholders [H/T @JohnHuber72] (LINK)

Health Care Without (much) Government - by Russ Roberts (LINK)

How to Reverse Engineer Biology (LINK)

Full Disclosure Podcast: The Overachieving Underwriter [H/T @rationalwalk] (LINK)
Markel Corp vice chairman Steve Markel on the insurer and investment shop as it approaches its 90th year in business. Worth $15 million when its shares debuted on Wall Street in 1986, Markel Corp is now a Fortune 500 member in 18 countries that is valued at more than $16 billion.
Grant’s Current Yield Podcast: It’s a gusher (LINK)

Exponent Podcast: 178 — More Ergonomic (LINK)

The Knowledge Project Podcast -- Scott Adams: Avoiding Loserthink (LINK)

One Man's Wild Quest to Reach the Bottom of Every Ocean [H/T @MebFaber] (LINK)

Thursday, November 21, 2019


CNBC’s full interview with Liberty Media Chairman John Malone (LINK)

Disney’s Kevin Mayer | Full interview | Code Media 2019 (video) (LINK)

WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey | Full interview | Code Media 2019 (video) (LINK)

This Man Is a Junkyard Billionaire (LINK)

Lessons From 24 Years of Operating: Bowl America, Inc. (LINK)

Banking on the Future: Why our most hated institutions will become our most beloved (LINK)

The Long View Podcast: Charles de Vaulx: Why Value Investing Has Slumped but Will Rebound (LINK)

Planet Money Podcast: #953: Three Sides Of A Car Loan (LINK)

Kyle Bass: "China: The Most Reckless Financial Experiment In History" (Hedgeye Investing Summit Video) (LINK)

Health Care Lessons from Dr. Keith Smith - by Russ Roberts (LINK)

Here’s to the Crazy Ones (LINK)

The Fascination With the Skin of a Dead French Revolutionary - by Sarah Zhang (LINK)

Whack 'em or nuke 'em: How to deflect a killer asteroid - by Phil Plait (LINK)

Tuesday, November 19, 2019


"Throughout the careers Charlie and I have had in investing, there have always been hundreds of cases, or thousands of cases, of things that are ridiculously priced, and phony stock promotions, and the gullible being led to believe in things that just can’t come true. So that’s always gone on. It always will go on. And it doesn’t make any difference to us. We are not trying to predict markets. We never will try and predict markets. We’re trying to find wonderful businesses. And the fact that a part of the market is kind of screwy, that’s unimportant to us." --Warren Buffett (1996)

Integration and Monopoly - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

Oaktree Insights: A Place for Real Estate Debt in Global Credit Investing (LINK)

The Greatest Money-Making Machine of All Time: On Renaissance Technologies and the Medallion Fund (LINK)

Aswath Damodaran on Aramco's IPO (Part 1, Part 2)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger – How to Build a Great Product (LINK)

EconTalk Podcast: Keith Smith on Free Market Health Care (LINK)

Hidden Forces Podcast: The Present Danger: America, China, and the Second Cold War | Kyle Bass (LINK)

‘Absolutely No Mercy’: Leaked Files Expose How China Organized Mass Detentions of Muslims (LINK)

Elastic: Flexible Thinking in a Constantly Changing World (LINK)

Algorithmic Blindspots - by David Perell (LINK)

The Greatest Shortcut for Leaders Is Reading Books - by Ryan Holiday (LINK)

Why polio is still around—and why we can eradicate it - by Bill Gates (LINK)

What America Lost When It Lost the Bison - by Ed Yong (LINK)

Saturday, November 16, 2019

David Goggins quote

From the audiobook version of Can't Hurt Me:
You have to turn that around yourself. No one is coming to save you. We have this mentality of "I'm going to wait to be saved. I'm going to wait for someone to come and help me." And I'm telling you right now, I believe in God—a lot of us believe in praying on it and stuff like that. Yeah, you can pray on it. But if you sit in a room and pray on it and do nothing about it, nothing's gonna happen. You have to put work behind everything in life. You have to put effort. You have to put friction behind something for something to change.

Friday, November 15, 2019


"We could make a lot of decisions about a lot of things very fast and very easily. And we’re unusual in that respect. And the reason we’re able to do that is there’s such an enormous other lot of things that we won’t allow ourselves to think about at all. It’s just that simple. I have a little phrase when people make pitches to me, and about halfway through the first sentence, I say, 'We don’t do startups.' They don’t exist. Well, if you blot out startups, there’s a whole layer of complexity that goes out of your life. And we’ve got other little blotter-out systems. And using those, we finally find out that what remains is still a pretty large territory that we can handle." --Charlie Munger (2008)

Value Investing with Legends Podcast: Joel Greenblatt - Investing Off the Beaten Path (LINK)

Scaling Fallacy in Investing (LINK)

The Softbank-WeWork End Game: Savior Economics or Sunk Cost Problem? - by Aswath Damodaran (LINK)

The Brooklyn Investor blog: What It Takes, Dimon, Twitter etc. (LINK)

The Acquirers Podcast: Growth Underwriter: Marcelo Lima on valuing SaaS businesses Amazon, Facebook, and Netflix (LINK)

Five Good Questions Podcast: Alan Klement - When Coffee and Kale Compete (LINK)

The Disruptive Voice Podcast: Disruption and electrification in the auto industry featuring Cliff Maxwell and Ned Calder (LINK)

Apes Might Know That You Don’t Know What They Know - by Ed Yong (LINK)

Thursday, November 14, 2019


"I would say that I like a certain amount of social intervention that takes some of the inequality out of results in capitalism. But I hate, with a passion, rewarding anything that can be easily faked. Because I think then people lie, and lying works, and the lying spreads. And I think your whole civilization deteriorates." --Charlie Munger (1996)

Sam Zell on Bloomberg TV discussing buying distressed oil assetsdiscussing WeWork, and discussing why he's not investing in Hong Kong.

Past as Prologue - by Frank K. Martin (LINK)

The Case Against Boeing (LINK)

Stephen Schwarzman on The David Rubenstein Show (video) (LINK)
Related book: What It Takes: Lessons in the Pursuit of Excellence
Planet MicroCap Podcast: 100 - Investing: It’s All About the Journey with Ian Cassel (LINK)

The Joe Rogan Experience (podcast): #1383 - Malcolm Gladwell (LINK)
Related book: Talking to Strangers
The Tim Ferriss Show (podcast): #395: Jocko Willink Takeover — On Quitting, Relationships, Financial Discipline, Contrast Baths, and More (LINK)

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Sorfis is now on Schwab

I'm pleased to announce that we've added Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. as a second custodian for offering our services. Given the extent of the Schwab platform, as well as the desire of some potential clients we've spoken with for a more diversified product than the Absolute Return Strategy, we are also now willing and able to offer more customized accounts.

For more details, please see the Services section of the website.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019


"Charlie and I spend a lot of time thinking about things that could hit us out of the blue that other people don’t include in their thinking. And we may miss some opportunities because of that, but we feel it’s essential when managing other people’s money or, for that matter, managing our own money." --Warren Buffett (2008)

Common Plots of Economic History - by Morgan Housel (LINK)

The Google Squeeze - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

Oaktree Insights: A Deeper Dive into Structured Credit (LINK)

The Knowledge Project Podcast: What It Takes with Stephen Schwarzman (LINK)
Related book: What It Takes: Lessons in the Pursuit of Excellence
Invest Like the Best Podcast: Daniel Ek – The Future of Audio (LINK)

Business Casual Podcast -- Risk it all: Matt Ball dissects the streaming wars (LINK)

Signaling: The Language Peacocks, Gazelles, and Humans All Speak (LINK)

How the Nile River Has Stayed In One Place for 30 Million Years (LINK)

Monday, November 11, 2019


"We really like things that you don’t have to carry out to three decimal places, you know. If you have to carry it out to three decimal places, it’s not a good idea.... It’s like if somebody walked in the door here and they weighed somewhere between 300 and 350 pounds. I might not know how much they weigh, but I would know they were fat. That’s all I’m looking for, is something that’s financially fat." --Warren Buffett (2008)

Jamie Dimon on "60 Minutes" (video) (LINK)

Chuck Akre and John Neff of Akre Capital Management on WealthTrack (video) (LINK)

Ironing Out an Investing Mystery - by Jason Zweig ($) (LINK)
‘Earnings management’ has become even more widespread in emerging markets than in developed markets like the U.S.
Pensions Venture Into Risky Corners of the Market in Hunt for Returns ($) (LINK)

Wise fiscal policy is not about helicopter money - by Claudio Borio (LINK)

The new dot com bubble is here: it’s called online advertising (LINK)

What is the endgame for Disney+? (LINK)

EconTalk Podcast: Rory Sutherland on Alchemy (LINK)
Related book: Alchemy: The Dark Art and Curious Science of Creating Magic in Brands, Business, and Life 
Exponent Podcast: 177 — Principle Stacks (LINK)

Odd Lots Podcast: Why The Repo Markets Went Crazy, And Why December Could Be Even Worse (LINK)

Grant’s Current Yield Podcast: Let the analytics department pitch to Drumbowski (LINK)

Short Wave Podcast: Can Global Shipping Go Zero Carbon? (LINK)

The New Yorker: Politics and More Podcast: How Facebook Continues to Spread Fake News [with Evan Osnos] (LINK)

For the golf fans out there.... Are You Not Entertained? Podcast: 208 - Jeehae Lee & Craig Connolly (the wee man) on the future of golf (LINK)

The ‘Ghost’ Genes of a Nearly Extinct Animal Live on in Texas - by Sarah Zhang (LINK)
A photographer began shooting unusual-looking coyotes on Galveston Island. They turned out to be descended from a very rare wolf species.

Thursday, November 7, 2019


"It’s crazy to have people get so big and so important that you can’t allow them to fail, and allow them to be run with as much knavery and stupidity as permeated the major investment banks. It’s not that Berkshire hasn’t had wonderful service from investment banking all these years, because we have. It’s just that, as an industry, this crazy culture of greed and overreaching and overconfidence in trading algorithms and so on creeps in. I would argue it’s quite counterproductive for the country, and it ought to be reigned way back. These institutions are too big to fail, and it was demented to allow derivative trading to end up the way it’s ended up and with the current risks that are embedded in the present system. And it’s amazing how few people spoke against it as it was happening. There was just so much easy money to be reported. A lot of the money that was reported as being earned wasn’t really being earned. It was in that wonderful category of assets that I call 'good until reached for.' They sit there on the balance sheet, and when you reach for it, it just fades away like — mist." --Charlie Munger (May 3, 2008)

Bill Gates at the DealBook conference (video) (LINK)

Reed Hastings at the DealBook conference (video) (LINK)

[The rest of the DealBook conference videos can be found HERE.]

The World Has Gone Mad and the System Is Broken - by Ray Dalio (LINK)

Three Things I Think I Think – Has The World Gone Mad? - by Cullen Roche (LINK)

The Acquirers Podcast: Ian Cassel turns the tables and interviews Tobias Carlisle (LINK)

Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman (podcast): Bill Gates — How to accelerate history (LINK)

The Hazards of Talking to Strangers (LINK)

Tuesday, November 5, 2019


How to Build Your Own BRK [via @Sanjay__Bakshi] (LINK)

The Popular Delusions newsletter relaunches (Dylan Grice) (LINK) [To subscribe, go HERE.]

Secrets of the Greatest Hedge Fund of All Time (video) (LINK)
Related book: The Man Who Solved the Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution
Boyar Value Group's Q3 Letter (LINK)

Tech and Liberty - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

De Beers Cuts Diamond Prices by About 5% as Industry Crisis Deepens (LINK)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: George Rzepecki – Investing in Africa (LINK)

EconTalk Podcast: Venkatesh Rao on Waldenponding (LINK)

Big Questions with Cal Fussman Podcast: Charles Schwab: How To Own Your Tomorrow (LINK)

Making Sense with Sam Harris Podcast: #174 — Richard Dawkins (LINK)

The James Altucher Show (podcast): 503 - The Path to Stillness: Ryan Holiday on How to Develop Self-Discipline & Reduce Overwhelm (LINK)
Related book: Stillness Is the Key

Sunday, November 3, 2019


"In general terms, unless you find the prices of a great company really offensive.... I think it’s better just to own them. We could attempt to buy and sell some of the things that we own that we think are fine businesses. But they’re too hard to find.... So, to sit there and hope that you buy them in the throes of some panic, that you sort of take the attitude of a mortician, waiting for a flu epidemic or something.... I’m not sure that will be a great technique....  I think the main thing to do is find wonderful businesses.... We’ve had our share of flu epidemics. But you don’t want to spend your life waiting around for them." --Warren Buffett (1996)

"By definition, a great company is one that’s going to remain great for 30 years. If it’s going to be a great company for three years, it ain’t a great company. So, you really want to go along with the idea of something that, if you were going to take a trip for 20 years, you wouldn’t feel bad leaving the money in with no orders with your broker and no power of attorney or anything, and you just go on the trip. And you know you come back, and it’s going to be a terribly strong company." --Warren Buffett (1996)

Berkshire Hathaway's Cash Pile Hits a Record ($) (LINK)

The Making of the World’s Greatest Investor ($) (LINK)
Related book: The Man Who Solved the Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution
Masters in Business Podcast: Gregory Zuckerman on the Quant Revolution (LINK)

Sometimes the Stock Market Needs ‘Knights of Faith’ - by Jason Zweig ($) (LINK) [Zweig also added some more detail HERE.]

The Absolute Return Letter - November 2019: How to invest in a low growth world (Part 2 of 2) (LINK)

Ray Dalio on The David Rubenstein Show (video) (LINK)

Value Investing with Legends Podcast: Leon Cooperman - Looking For More For Less (LINK)

a16z Podcast: Come for the Games, Stay for the Party (LINK)

Think Again Podcast: 218. Bill Bryson – the most extraordinary machine (LINK)
Related book: The Body: A Guide for Occupants 
A ‘Horror Movie’ Fish That Moves on Land—Or Does It? (LINK)