Issue 359 – 01/03/2020

This week’s highlights: Navy Seals, Chinese Restaurants, and LeBron.

Starting 2020?
Photo by Jukan Tateisi on Unsplash

Issue 359

by David Wells – Nashville TN

From the Editor
 
Happy New Year Everyone,

Some quick housekeeping to start the year.  Fifteen on Friday started on April 22, 2012 and has grown and evolved over the years.  One of the trends I have noticed over the last number of months is that while there may be 15 articles each week, the top 10 account for vast majority of reads. 

In light of that, I am looking at loosening the ’15’ restriction a bit to focus on a top 10, and selectively add other bits of content that may be of interest.  As well, I’m testing out a few different visual formats. The goal as always is to make the newsletter entertaining and interesting, as well as hopefully easy to read. 

Please send me your thoughts and feedback!

All the best,

David

Food for Thought

2.  Esquire – The Savior Elite: Inside the Special Operations Force Tasked with Rescuing Navy SEALS 

They are the military’s “guardian angels.” They are trained paramedics, paratroopers, and combat divers. This is the story of one such airman, and the mission of a lifetime.
Estimated Read Time: 15 min

3.  Politico – This Is Why Your Holiday Travel Is Awful

The long, sordid history of New York’s Penn Station shows how we have made it too hard for the government to do big things—and why, believe it or not, Robert Caro is to blame.
Estimated Read Time: 40 m

4. Ars – 88% of Americans use a second screen while watching TV. Why?

Does anyone watch commercials anymore?
Estimated Read Time: 5 min

5. NYT – Chinese Restaurants Are Closing. That’s a Good Thing, the Owners Say.

The share of Chinese restaurants has fallen in metro areas across the country in the last five years. Many owners are glad their children won’t be taking over.
Estimated Read Time: 7 min

6.  Bloomberg – The Hacker Who Took Down a Country

Daniel Kaye, also known as Spdrman, found regular jobs tough but corporate espionage easy. He’s about to get out of prison.
Estimated Read Time: 20 min


Business

  1. AQR – The Illiquidity Discount? I think it’s entirely possible that investors are accepting a discounted expected net return (though discounted from a high level as we are starting with levered small-cap not a low-risk, low-return investment) for the privilege of not being told the prices.
  2. Novus – Family Resemblance – Researchers Nimesh Patel and Tray Spilker from the University of Hawaii have found that unanimous trades that happen across a family of fund managers can point to significant alpha. In the order of 7% per year, after stripping out most common risk factors.

Culture/Tech/Science:

  1. WSJ – LeBron James and the Golden Age of Geezer Athletes  He was the best player in NBA history at 24 and 28. Now he’s doing it again in his age-35 season. This is the third act of James’s career: the post-prime.
  2. MIT – I asked my students to turn in their cell phones and write about living without them.
  3. Ted – My journey from Marine to actor | Adam Driver

What I’m Reading Now:
Personal History – Katherine Graham

“In this bestselling and widely acclaimed memoir, Katharine Graham, the woman who piloted the Washington Post through the scandals of the Pentagon Papers and Watergate, tells her story—one that is extraordinary both for the events it encompasses and for the courage, candor, and dignity of its telling.”