Crash, Default, Jimmy Carter, Windscale, Markets


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After The Fall

John Lanchester | LRB | 27th June 2018

Reflections on the crash of 2008. “The immediate consequence was the bailout of the banks. I’m not sure if it’s philosophically possible for an action to be both necessary and a disaster, but that in essence is what the bailouts were. They were necessary because this was a moment of existential crisis for the financial system, and we don’t know what the consequences would have been for our societies if everything had imploded. But they turned into a disaster we are still living through” (7,560 words)

New Study Shows

Daniel Miessler | 25th June 2018

You can make at a fairly accurate credit assessment just from looking at a person’s computer and email address. “Here are a few things that jumped out as predictors: iOS users were half as likely to default [as Android users]; Emails with names in them were better; Desktops defaulted far less than mobile; People with numbers their emails defaulted more; People with old domain emails (Hotmail, Yahoo) defaulted more; People who ordered at night instead of in the afternoon defaulted more” (617 words)

Jimmy Carter For Higher Office

Michael Paterniti | GQ | 26th June 2018

Affectionate portrait of America’s eldest statesman, Jimmy Carter, still sprightly at 93, in his fourth decade as an ex-president, and preaching most Sunday mornings in Plains, Georgia. “His actual presidency feels more like a footnote, an aberration in the life of a holy man. Somewhere inside the man we knew as president, there’s always been Mr. Jimmy, the seeker, who over time grew in concentration, no longer caring for our approval but, in a weird way, for the state of our national soul” (6,500 words)

The Waste Land

Marilynne Robinson | Granta | 1st March 1985

“On the coast of Cumbria, there is a nuclear reprocessing plant called Sellafield, formerly Windscale, that daily pumps up to a million gallons of radioactive waste down a mile and a half of pipeline, into the Irish Sea. It has done this for thirty-five years. The waste contains caesium and ruthenium and strontium, and uranium, and plutonium — enough to kill 250 million people. Britain, in a time of peace, has silently, needlessly, passionlessly, visited upon us all a calamity equal to the worst we fear” (5,400 words)

Are Markets Efficient?

Eugene Fama & Richard Thaler | Chicago Booth Review | 30th June 2016

Two Nobel economics laureates discuss what the efficient-market hypothesis involves, and whether it is correct. Fama: “It’s a very simple statement. Prices reflect all available information. Testing that turns out to be more difficult, but it’s a simple hypothesis. I don’t know any investors who shouldn’t act as if markets are efficient.” Thaler: “I like to distinguish two aspects of it. One is whether you can beat the market. The other is whether prices are correct” (2,200 words)

Video of the day Soulmates

What to expect:

Split-screen comparison and collage of effects generated in Maya and Arnold Renderer, by RenderBurger (3’24”)

Thought for the day

A highbrow is a man educated beyond his capacity
Frank Lloyd Wright

Podcast The Headless Torso | Business Wars

Lindsay Graham talks about the early-20C rivalry between the Hearst and Pulitzer newspaper empires
(28m 47s)

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