10 Weekend Reads

Welcome to the weekend! Pour yourself a hot mug of Jamaican Blue Mountain, and settle in for our longer form weekend reads:

• Sneaker Wars: Inside the Battle Between Nike and Adidas (GQ)
• Children of the Yuan Percent: Everyone Hates China’s Rich Kids (Bloomberg)
• How Prescription Drugs Get So Wildly Expensive (Wired)
• A Brief History of the Corporation: 1600 to 2100 (Ribbon Farm) but see A Country Is Not a Company (Harvard Business Review)
• Tastemaker: How Spotify’s Discover Weekly cracked human curation at internet scale (The Verge)
• Do Millennials Deserve Their Criticism? (Vanity Fair)
• The Politics of Star Trek (Claremont Institute)
• Can Surfing Reprogram the Veteran’s Brain? There’s no quick fix for post-traumatic stress disorder, but research has shown that surfing’s physicality and flow can give victims some relief and a way forward. (Outside) see also In Unit Stalked by Suicide, Veterans Try to Save One Another (NYT)
• How the Church of Scientology fought the Internet—and why it lost (Kernal)
• The long, shameful list of school shootings since Newtown (Every Town) see also Mass shootings since Sandy Hook, in one map (Vox)

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business interview this weekend with economist Gary Shilling.


We’re Living Much Longer

Source: The Economist


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What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. chartist commented on Oct 3

    My morning missive is it’s time to get back into Ford Motor. The F150 is gorgeous, the strike is settled, and it’s only $1 above recent lows.

  2. rd commented on Oct 3

    With a permanent zero interest policy firmly in place and the meeting minutes now essentially authored by Wall Street fan fiction, it leaves a lot of very bright economists at the Federal Reserve searching for something to do, since their normal macro-economic analysis function is now unnecessary. So obviously you go straight to the classic topics covered by the Bard and start a dating advice column. The concept of mating dating and credit scores is brilliant and I see potential for being the next big Silicon Valley start-up. I expect to see Dokko, Li, and Hayes showing up on “shark Tank” soon looking for Mark Cuban to fund the Fed’s new relationship advice smartphone app so that anybody can immediately check the credit score of somebody they just met at the bar to see if they are compatible, or it could be a whole new version of Tinder with a scientific financial basis. However, I think the Fed needs to hire some better micro-economists to help with their marketing. Valentine’s Day would be a much better rollout time for their new dating advice column if they are seeking to really monetize the clicks.


    • VennData commented on Oct 3

      Comment of the year

  3. A commented on Oct 3

    The long, shameful list of school shootings

    The time to have handled this critical issue was 20 years ago. Without a courageous and un-corrupted congress, nothing is going to change. Power & Profit take Precedence over People.

    Sadly, America must accept the fact that a portion of its population will always be disposable.

  4. RW commented on Oct 3

    Political gridlock ain’t just a clown show on the campaign trail and in DC, it has policy consequences, and infrastructure doesn’t just mean buildings and roads.

    As a nation we are behind in far more ways than one and not catching up in most.

    Disappointing Jobs Numbers and Not Enough Teachers
    The number of teachers and education staff fell dramatically during the recession, and has failed to get anywhere near its prerecession level, let alone the level that would be required to keep up with an expanding student population. Along with the dismal shortfall in public sector employment, due to the Great Recession and the ensuing austerity at all levels of government, public education jobs are still 236,000 less than they were seven years ago.

  5. Jojo commented on Oct 3

    Less hours, same pay? Can that fly in the USA?
    Can Sweden make the case for a 6-hour workday?
    From tech start-ups to nursing homes, Sweden is experimenting with less time at work.

    By Kelsey Warner, Staff writer September 30, 2015

    Sweden, birthplace of ABBA, IKEA, and Volvo, may soon have another celebrated export: the 6-hour workday.

    The practice is not yet universal, but companies across multiple sectors report positive results from the shorter day.


  6. RW commented on Oct 3

    GOP Presidential Candidates, Science, and Reality
    Every time I see an article about something one of the GOP contenders has said, I’m stunned at just how much lower they can sink. It’s as if they’re scrambling on purpose to brag about the dumbest possible thing they can come up with.

    Think I’m exaggerating? Here are some choice examples of ideas that have come out of the mouth holes of the remaining viable candidates: …

    NB: When a tribe or political party becomes increasingly and explicitly anti-science — not simply refusing knowledge of the real world but actively contradicting or opposing its acquisition and use — it becomes impossible to trust anything they propose even if it appears superficially plausible.

  7. CD4P commented on Oct 3

    Hey, those shade grown, organic morning reads yesterday were delicious!

  8. VennData commented on Oct 3

    Google has had a very busy week.

    It has unveiled new Nexus devices and accompanying services, boosting its MVNO Google Fi in the process. It has acquired Jibe Mobile, creator of a platform for RCS (Rich Communication Services) which could be the successor to SMS. It has agreed a patents truce with Microsoft after five years at war and agreed to work with its arch-enemy on a new approach to IPR and standards.

    All these apparently diverse activities have one overriding objective in common – to place the mobile user experience firmly in Google’s own hands, relegating the operators to willing or unwilling bitpipe partners. That has been an ongoing process, of course, ever since usage of key Google revenue generators like search and Maps started to shift to mobile devices. Android was a powerful, if flawed, attempt to place those services at the heart of everyone’s mobile platform, making Google the user’s primary relationship, not the operator.

    Ever since, it has built on that, developing different ways to own and monetize the mobile user and stay ahead of over-the-top rivals, operators and even its own device partners in so doing. Its three moves this week are all part of the process. The Nexus and Chromecast devices will be heavily sold through Google’s direct-to-consumer channels and its MVNO, with no US operator signed up to offer the new smartphones. Jibe will give Google the potential to seize the initiative from the cellular players in harmonizing RCS – despite that being a very cellular platform. And in turning its back on patents litigation, it aims to lead a powerful coalition of vendors to turn the traditional licensing and IPR systems – which have defined the mobile world for so long – on their heads, and pushing royalty-free, Google-style technologies up against traditionally licensed standards like H.264/5.


    Invest accordingly.

    • rd commented on Oct 3

      Its anecdotal, but what we are seeing is companies delaying projects and scrutinizing every detail of a cost estimate while questioning everything, including previous commitments. It has been getting harder each month to maintain a backlog of work over the past year. Companies are slashing anything resembling overhead. These days there is always somebody coming in 20%-30% below the field in construction work bids – they will struggle to cover their costs, never mind make a profit. It feels closer to mild recession conditions than economic recovery.

  9. VennData commented on Oct 3

    Steve Bartman turns down proposed trip to Cubs wild-card game


    Take the curse via hearse

  10. intlacct commented on Oct 3

    re How Prescription Drugs Get So Wildly Expensive: The words ‘marketing’ and ‘executive comp’ do not appear once in the article.

    I don’t think the writer ‘gets’ it.

  11. just-sayin commented on Oct 5

    Re : Mass Shootings in America

    It amazes me the resources the US expends trying to
    fight ‘terrorism’ while these shootings are pretty much shrugged off now.

    Where is the real ‘terrorism’ in America ?
    In my mind, it is a product of these mass shootings making people
    terrified to go anywhere outside of their ‘gated communities’ or to the
    malls and movie theatres.

    When will the US ever get out of its ‘Wild West’ mentality and
    join the civilized world ?

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