Tim Knight from Slope of Hope's blog
Although I never thought it was possible, it makes me angry to write this book review. I'm not angry because I don't like the book. On the contrary, this is the best economics book I've ever read. Indeed, it may be the best and most influential book I've ever read in my life. I only wish I had read it the moment it was published in April 2013.
I was looking at the entire history of the volatility index (the oft-cited "VIX') and found an interesting parallel.
It occurred to me this morning the perfect representation of this equity market: the T-1000 robot from Terminator 2.
Ten times a year, once a month except in August and October, a small group of well dressed men arrives in Basel, Switzerland. Carrying elegant overnight bags and stylish brief cases, they discreetly check into the Euler Hotel, across from the railroad station. They come to this quiet city from places as disparate as Tokyo, Paris, Brasilia, London, and Washington, D.C., for the regular meeting of the most exclusive, secretive, and powerful supranational club in the world.
Well, this is just kind of sad. I was looking at a post from a few years back, when our own BDI visited the Occupy Wall Street gathering. There was a link to one of the better-known protestors who did an AMA ("Ask Me Anything") on the mega-website reddit.com:
I was reminded of this by this story from Salt Lake City, which tells of an officer that was looking for a lost child. For reasons wholly unclear to me, in conducting a house-to-house search, this "peace" officer shot and killed a dog.
When all the dust settles, Palo Alto is definitely going to look a lot more modern than it did when I first moved here. All I can say, though, is that when the current bubble finally bursts, whether it's next month or next decade, there are going to be an awfully lot of expensive, empty, class A office buildings situated around town, holding nothing but the memories of ping-pong games past.
I'm an entrepreneur. A real one. An honest-to-God, up-from-the-bootstraps, take-on-the-world entrepreneur. I assure you that signature pink and a sleek silhouette were never involved. Neither was modern color blocking (unless you count the fact that, when needed, I could match a blue shirt with khakis). "Entrepreneur" has officially lost every shred of its meaning.
Many of you probably heard the news yesterday that teachers unions received a nasty (and well-deserved) blow from the Los Angeles Superior Court. So when I was listening to the radio yesterday, and the reporter was saying that California teachers are granted "tenure at eighteen...." I naively assumed the next word was going to be "years." Nope. It was "months." After just eighteen months, these people get what is effectively guaranteed lifetime employment. Even, as in the court's case, the teacher just sleeps at their desk or browses the web.
What has the top attention of the residents in my fair town of Palo Ato? The answer: the monthly salary of the 20 year old interns at local firms like Facebook, Google, and Palantir. Here ya go, America - - this is what kids still in colllege are pulling down:
Let's go on to assume that nothing is going to change. The stock market is simply going to keep going up. Slowly, yes, but up nonetheless. The central bankers will, whenever required, create whatever programs, easings, or other actions are required to keep supporting equities. And, simply stated, the rich will just keep getting richer. What would this all mean?
Denying someone an opportunity based on anything other than their skills is immoral. And equally immoral is actively seeking out and hiring the "disadvantaged" or "under-represented" simply to meet some kind of quota or corporate goal. It's an injustice to any other candidates that are better-qualified for the task at hand.
I have the good fortune to live in Palo Alto, and - mercifully - I bought my house way back in 1991, which was three bubbles ago. Over that time, the house in which I live is worth nine times what I paid for it. Those outside the Silicon Valley might find perverse comfort in the relative bargains of their own neighborhood.
Since companies going public and their investment bankers want to create good value for your shareholder dollars, I thought I'd present some percentage graphs of recent IPOs and the dynamite profits they've returned to the general public. Please note I am including the entire history of each firm since their initial offering. Congratulations, one and all!
So instead of one wholly integrated federal health care system, we have something like 30 disparate systems, all of them expensive, and none of them perfect. Indeed, "not perfect" is an absurd understatement, roughly equal to Oprah being "not petite." Allow me to offer my own personal example.