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Top Articles of the Week – 03/01/19 Edition

This week’s highlights:  The Cost of Kids, The State of Private Equity and Automotive Country Clubs

photo of little girl s hands covered with paint

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Fifteen on Friday – 03/01/19 – Issue 322

Happy Friday,

David


Food for Thought:

Top Read of the Week:  TheAtlantic – It Isn’t the Kids. It’s the Cost of Raising Them.

Why It Matters:    Further context and diving deeper into a specific research finding is incredibly important.  As this article notes, “for several decades, the work of happiness researchers has consistently pointed to an unintuitive conclusion: Having children doesn’t tend to make people happier, and might even make them less happy.”  Yet the result changes profoundly when controlling for financial related concerns.

Consider as well:

  1. NYT – A ‘Tradition’ Omission: I Had Never Seen ‘Fiddler’ Until Now   This is a beautiful reflection on the impact of family culture and tradition.  “If I chalked up my familiarity with “Fiddler” to its clichéd resemblance to my life, now I remembered that clichés are clichés because they’re true, right?”
  2. GQ – How to Read 80ish Books a Year (And Actually Remember Them)
  3. MC – I Was One Of The Top Doctors In My Field. I Was Also An Opioid Addict.  Having just finished Beth Macy’s tremendous Dopesick, this piece again highlights the severity and ubiquity of the opioid epidemic.  The resounding message, the sinister potency of the opioid molecule and its hijacking of normal brain chemistry, means that anyone is susceptible.
  4. Youtube – 4 Year Old at Hockey  What does a 4 year old talk about on the ice at hockey practice? One dad wired up his son after watching him babble from the sidelines.  The result is both hilarious and heartwarming.

Business/Economics:

Top Read of the Week:  Bain – Global Private Equity Report 2019

Why It Matters:   Bain’s annual review of private equity is arguably the most comprehensive look at the state of the industry.  This year’s 88 page tome does not disappoint.

Consider as well:

  1. WB – The Game Theory of Brexit – If you have trouble keep tracking of the various permutations regarding Brexit, this is an excellent synopsis.
  2. Stratechery – The Value Chain Constraint
  3. Bloomberg – The Bill Gross You Didn’t Know: Taxes, Deficits and Asperger’s
  4. AW – The Six New Commandments of Hedge Fund Investing

Culture/Tech/Science:

Top Read of the Week:  NYT – Trading Fairways for Straightaways at Automotive Country Clubs

Why It Matters:  “Robert A. Lutz, the outspoken retired auto executive, lamented the inevitability of driverless cars. “Automotive sport — using the cars for fun — will survive, just not on public highways,” he said. “It will survive in country clubs such as Monticello in New York and Autobahn in Joliet, Ill. It will be the well-to-do, to the amazement of all their friends, who still know how to drive and who will teach their kids how to drive.”

Consider as well:

  1. Outside – Urban Organics Wants to Fix Food – Credit KW – Inside a repurposed Twin Cities brewery, a massive aquaponics operation is ready to provide a locavore’s dream: fresh produce and fish, raised indoors every month of the year
  2. NPR – Scientists Release Controversial Genetically Modified Mosquitoes In High-Security Lab  Scientists have launched a major new phase in the testing of a controversial genetically modified organism: a mosquito designed to quickly spread a genetic mutation lethal to its own species, NPR has learned.
  3. WP – How to Get Rich Without Being Lucky – Naval Ravikant
  4. TSB – HRH Prince of Wales Visit to G&G – Prince Charles, well known for his sartorial proclivities, visits a famed English shoemaker.

Top Articles This Week – 02/22/19 Edition

This week’s highlights:  Inbox Management, Strategic Strategy, and Zion’s Shoe

silver macbook pro

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Fifteen on Friday – Issue 321

Happy Friday,

David


Food for Thought:

Top Read of the Week:  Medium – How I’ve Made Email my Secret Weapon

Why It Matters:   Whether it is near constant pop-ups announcing the arrival of new mail or tons of irrelevant messages, I’m going to guess for the vast majority of people their inbox has become the master they never wanted. This piece is spot on about how to ruthlessly manage your inbox and not the other way around.

Consider as well:

  1. NYT Mag – Wealthy, Successful, and Miserable  Author Charles Duhigg reflects on the life of his Harvard Business School classmates.
  2. Tennessean – The hospital is dead. Welcome to Ducktown  Rural Hospitals Are Collapsing Throughout Tennessee, Creating Health Care Deserts In Poor, Far-Flung Towns Where Residents Are The Most Vulnerable.
  3. Guardian – New AI fake text generator may be too dangerous to release, say creators  The Elon Musk-backed nonprofit company OpenAI declines to release research publicly for fear of misuse
  4. NYT – A Real Tube Carrying Dreams of 600-M.P.H. Transit   Virgin Hyperloop One is testing a system that would put passengers in pods hurtling through vacuum tubes. Other companies are moving ahead with similar plans.

Business/Economics:

Top Read of the Week:  McKinsey – Strategy’s strategist: An interview with Richard Rumelt

Why It Matters:   “Most corporate strategic plans have little to do with strategy. They are simply three-year or five-year rolling resource budgets and some sort of market share projection. Calling this strategic planning creates false expectations that the exercise will somehow produce a coherent strategy.:

Consider as well:

  1. VF – “She Never Looks Back”: Inside Elizabeth Holmes’S Chilling Final Months At Theranos  At the end, Theranos was overrun by a dog defecating in the boardroom, nearly a dozen law firms on retainer, and a C.E.O. grinning through her teeth about an implausible turnaround.
  2. Forbes – The Greatest Investor You’ve Never Heard Of: An Optometrist Who Beat The Odds To Become A Billionaire
  3. Novus – A New Era for Long/Short Fundamental Equity  Examining the forces behind the challenging environment for fundamental equity long/short strategies, and how successful players can respond.
  4. NYT – As McKinsey Sells Advice, Its Hedge Fund May Have a Stake in the Outcome

Culture/Tech/Science:

Top Read of the Week: NYT – Zion Williamson’s Injury Has Some Saying He Should Quit Duke 

Why It Matters:   “A freakish injury to Duke’s Zion Williamson, college basketball’s best and most prominent player, only seconds into a game on Wednesday night has instantaneously renewed a debate about the contradictions of the sport’s economic foundation, shining a harsh new light on the N.C.A.A.’s policy of amateurism and the influence of billion-dollar shoe companies.”

Consider as well:

  1. Guardian – Super-tall, super-skinny, super-expensive: the ‘pencil towers’ of New York What are air rights and why do they matter?
  2. Engadget – Samsung’s foldable phone is officially the ‘Galaxy Fold’
  3. MIT – Once hailed as unhackable, blockchains are now getting hacked  More and more security holes are appearing in cryptocurrency and smart contract platforms, and some are fundamental to the way they were built.
  4. BusinessWeek – Why America’s New Apartment Buildings All Look the Same  Cheap stick framing has led to a proliferation of blocky, forgettable mid-rises—and more than a few construction fires
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