Friday, January 3, 2020


"Risk and uncertainty aren’t the same as loss, but they create the potential for loss when things go wrong. Some of the biggest losses occur when overconfidence regarding predictive ability causes investors to underestimate the range of possibilities, the difficulty of predicting which one will materialize, and the consequences of a surprise." --Howard Marks ("The Most Important Thing Illuminated")

J.P. Morgan Asset Management's Guide to the Markets (LINK)

The New Yorker Radio Hour (podcast): Dexter Filkins on the Air Strike that Killed Qassem Suleimani (LINK)
Qassem Suleimani was Iran’s most powerful military and intelligence leader, and his killing, in a U.S. air strike in Baghdad on Thursday night, will likely be taken as an act of war by Tehran. Dexter Filkins, who wrote the definitive profile of Suleimani, in 2013, spoke with David Remnick about the commander’s central role within the Iranian regime. Reprisals against the U.S., he says, might be carried out anywhere in the world, either by Iran’s Quds Force or by affiliates such as Hezbollah. The Trump Administration experiences tension between a desire for regime change and the President’s desire to avoid foreign wars; Filkins notes that embattled Presidents, like Bill Clinton during his impeachment, often have itchy trigger fingers.
Another Round in the Middle East? - by Peter Zeihan (LINK)

Parenting "Range": An Interview with Range Author David Epstein (LINK)
Related book: Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World
NGC 4455: A nearby galaxy that's the stepping stone to the Universe (LINK)

"Plans fail because of what we have called tunneling, the neglect of sources of uncertainty outside the plan itself.... The unexpected almost always pushes in a single direction: higher costs and a longer time to completion. On very rare occasions, as with the Empire State Building, you get the opposite: shorter completion and lower costs—these occasions are becoming truly exceptional nowadays.... As I said earlier, we are too narrow-minded a species to consider the possibility of events straying from our mental projections, but furthermore, we are too focused on matters internal to the project to take into account external uncertainty, the 'unknown unknown,' so to speak, the contents of the unread books." --Nassim Taleb ("The Black Swan")