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netnet

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  1. The probability of a margin call on the DJCO is probably 0. The company undoubtedly has access to liquidity to cover any eventuality. This arm chair quarterbacking of one of the best investors in American economic history is a bit comical, frankly. (Note, Charlie has repeatedly lambasted the comfortably rich flirting with catastrophic risk. He has said more than once, "I have no intention of going back to 0.")
  2. Not to be contentious, Spec, but there is so much wrong here. There is almost no chance that Munger would have 'blown himself up'. Remember it was Munger not Buffett who was into quality stocks. Historical note their friend Guerin on the other hand did blow up, but died a very wealthy man; he was on margin a lot. Buffett acknowledges Munger's affect on him, I have never heard Munger say the reverse. Volatility is not risk, that is Buffett and Munger teachings #2 after #1 don't lose money. They shoot fish in drained barrels. He only used margin on absolute locks, this was when he was younger and did not have no-recourse debt Both of them are risk averse, see shooting fish above!
  3. This is a story about a company that presented to Charlie and the board at the Daily Journal. It was a venture style investment (note: Buffett has invested in new companies) url to Linkedin article
  4. What is the url for the transcript of the Li Lu/Greenwald talk? Thanks.
  5. A few questions on the asset class: What are the best posts on cobf on crypto? (I know, I know, I will read this whole thread) What are the best posts on the web? Other than Ethereum and Bit, what else should one invest in, (pre IPO Coinbase would have been possible a few months ago.) Dogecoin It seems to me that we are in the late stages of this cycle so of a total allocation to crypto, invest 20%- 40% now and wait for the pullback.
  6. Yes the computer generated transcript was not particularly accurate. No real revelations and I might add given the (presumed) IQ of the audience, Cal Tech afterall, the questions where not particularly good. I suspect most of the people on this board would have had better questions. (Obviously there could be sampling bias by the person who selected the questions.) But this just goes to show that effective horsepower is the key not potential horsepower, i.e. people on this board know a lot more about Munger than the questioners! At some point the talk should be on Cal Tech's Youtube channel. Highlights: Know your circle of competence. Go where the competition is weak, (I was not going to be brilliant in Thermodynamics, at least by Cal Tech standards) Find something you enjoy and can work hard on Try and benefit from a tail wind. People from Harvard and Stanford don't go to work at Costco, they should think about it, it's a rising tide (or at least it was) and your competition is not going to be that strong (inside of Costco). My department, Meteorology, was properly tossed, it was purely empirical field (not upto Cal Tech standards). I did not make my money on macro forecasting, but these are quite interesting times...I can't believe the rise of China and the level of debt of developed countries. He said he did not learn anything (academically) at Cal Tech that he used later in life, but he did say he learned he was not going to be studying Thermodynamics professionally (Circle of competence?). The competition in investing business was weak in his day. Sequoia's record in investing has been phenomenal. His (early venture) record on the other hand: he nearly killed himself in an oscilloscope business, total sales 3. They did not anticipate magnetic tape, as a recording medium. He stayed away from venture after that! He got in his usual dig on liberal arts professors.
  7. Good point. So, on a practical level, what would be the functional equivalence of this?
  8. Although I haven't lived there in awhile, I can try: what is it that you want to know? Where to stay , where to party, what to see, where to buy RE? For sight seeing, the museums, when they reopen are free! As are the tours of the capital--ask your representative for tickets. Climbing the stairs to the top of George Washington monument is a good workout. Kayaking the Potomac is nice, beware of the Great falls area though. (the sunken shipwrecks is an interesting nature experience, south of DC) Remember that DC area it was a yellow fever swamp though, classified as hazard, tropical duty by the British foreign office. So it is hotter and more humid than Queens. As for partying, I'm afraid I'm out of date on that one, but the rectangle from say 22nd to the say 12th and L to U might be a good locus. I'm told that the Ethiopianl/Eritrean food is the best to be had outside of Adis Ababa, but last time I was there there were still no good renditions of fish oriented coastal cuisine. There are a number of brew pubs, as one would imagine, but you have Yelp for that. There are also a huge number of Salvadoran places. I have not found great Haitian food, but there has to be some there. And of course there is West African food. I think there are 2 or 3 Michelin starred restaurants, if that is your thing. a local speciality is soft-shell crabs, which I adore. You can also do hard-shell crabs, much cheaper and do a bucket with fries and beer The bus system is okay, but the Metro is great, much cleaner and quieter than NY but obviously 1/10 as extensive. Good luck
  9. https://www.youtube.com/embed/Rh1WCzfCP24
  10. Hey SD, Munger is quoting you ;) --WSJ today. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.wsj.com/amp/articles/charlie-munger-the-phone-is-not-ringing-off-the-hook-11587132006 Although I (obviously) feel more threatened personally (read health-wise) with this crisis, financially I feel much better than 2008. Yes the GNP may really dip and small businesses are going to be mowed down, but the financial system was teetering in '08, which is (currently) not the case now. As always we are in uncharted territory, but it seems as if the returns in private (VC, small scale PE) and public markets require (even more) patience than one would think. Wait for the fat pitch or as Buffett also said, shoot the fish in a drained barrel. (Minor historical note, returns to capital tend to reduced after pandemics, both large and small.)
  11. I'm halfway through Think Like a Rocket Scientist. It just came out this week. Varol really was a rocket scientist who left NASA to go back to university to become a law professor. It's is a great book. Varol is a good writer, who makes a narrative cohere to his point. The first chapter on decision making under uncertainty is worth the price of the book one year of college. I am a great believer in building and using various thinking tools. I've read a shelf full of books on thinking. Varol's will go into my highly used reference section with Thinking Fast and Slow and Poor Charlie's Almanack
  12. A sorry excuse for a leader. So is the Governor of Virginia. You know, the guy who can't follow the Constitution, likes to dress up in blackface, and would kill babies after birth. Is he a great leader in your opinion? I want to hold my tongue here, so instead of saying that's a pretty ignorant thing to say, I will say hmmm... you think so. That is an interesting opinion. To paraphrase the late Daniel Moynihan you are entitled to your own opinions, but not your own facts. To wit, I don't think anything you said about the gov Northam is really true. re Northam: One could argue rightfully that he doesn't have the same interpretation of the constitution that you do. As to the black face, there is constitutional statute of limitation for one's college stupidities, (Eighth Amendment if memory serves) ;) (sortof fact) And the baby killing statement is a willful misinterpretation. For the record he was talking about non-viable fetuses. Look, he's a doctor and the nuance on his statements on this was lost in the brouhaha. So no he is not a 'baby-killer'. Trump, on the other hand, is never nuanced. He seems to be quite challenged by the constitution. He is a paragon nothing save narcissistic socio-pathy. He is a mentally ill man with no morals who is utterly out of his depth generally and this crisis is telling. Back to the prez and coronavirus: Sadly, people have (and will) die because of Trump, plain and simple.
  13. Here is a new talk from Li Lu. 5 years after a similar talk at Peking U. https://www.longriverinv.com/blog/the-practice-of-value-investing-by-li-lu Here it is in Chinese: https://xueqiu.com/6026781624/137223946
  14. Of course his first priority is himself. He's a narcissistic personality disorder and likely a sociopath. He doesn't care about reopening for "the economy" in general, he knows this current path doesn't lead him to get re-elected, and it's really bad for his hotels and resorts and his debt payments, and if he's out of power it's dangerous that he'll be investigated without pardon power, so he's ready to gamble it all and put all his chips on 15 black and spin the wheel in the hope that this other approach may be better for his election and businesses. He's been incredibly lucky all his life, born to wealth, getting away with all kinds of stuff, becoming president.. He's just gambling with lots of lives and the US healthcare system in the balance that his luck will hold. And he didn't know back then. He's not intellectually capable to have understood the implications when it was still theoretical, and he's surrounded by yes-men and he fires or drives away anyone who's independent-minded pretty quickly. Listen to him talk about any of this and it's just a bunch of word-salad "it's great, going tremendous, big effort"... No real understanding. Even now as people are dying and hospitals are being quickly turned into disaster zones, he's not listening to the people who know what they're talking about, he's driving away Fauci and contradicting his task force on TV and picking petty fights with desperate governors who need federal help. He's likely never even spoke to anyone on the front lines of this and shows zero empathy for anyone dealing with this, only worry for himself veiled in language about "the economy" (which was how he always said he measured his presidency, always talking about stock market records, etc). "it's great, going tremendous, big effort" More like "it's very very great, going tremendous, quite tremendously, big big effort. very big. so big you won't believe but it's there and I'm almost always right about these things." You forgot the "...And who knew that epidemics could threaten the economy..."
  15. https://www.businessinsider.com/church-cult-south-korea-coronavirus-outbreak-meetings-wuhan-december-2020-2?op=1 Uhh...what?? 200 members of this cult were in Wuhan!
  16. Thanks Xerxes Another recent and relevant podcast episode I liked: Invest like the Best (Patrick O'Shaughnessy), episode 163 "Investing through a Crisis with Dan Rasmussen" https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/dan-rasmussen-investing-through-crisis-invest-like/id1154105909?i=1000468532281 Here is Rasmussen's paper: https://mcusercontent.com/6dc62f307511d466ff78a94fe/files/b12058f7-afbd-4078-8604-52c9cbc1b592/Crisis_Investing_Verdad_Advisers_Ebook.01.pdf
  17. This are the times for which Berkshire is built. To me more importantly, about right after the Daily Journal Annual meeting, I was getting very nervous about Charlie and Warren in a wash of all those people who could potentially infect them. I was very relieved that BH's annual is now online. (There are also a fair number of elderly shareholders who would also have been at risk.)
  18. there is evidence that COVID-19 is present in fecal matter AND even maybe in aerosols associated with fecal matter--read farts and poorly vented sewage systems (possible vector on cruise ships BTW.) Also, I'm a bit concerned about Berkshire's Annual Meeting: Munger and Buffett are the prime age group for fatal infections, just saying
  19. I'm curious. Did anyone happen to see what happened in small PE deals during SARS or MERS? i.e. were there dips in pricing?
  20. My friend wants to buy a park. I am thinking I would rather buy some (one?) mobile home, rehab and rent or rent to sell just to see how it works. I also wanted to try it before I suggested it to some enterprising younger relatives.
  21. Steven Pinker, a renowned Harvard professor of psychology and public intellectual, is teaching a course on rationality at Harvard this year. The lectures are online, as is the syllabus. https://stevenpinker.com/classes/rationality-gened-1066 He is about 2 weeks into the course. I do not know whether or not the lectures will be available after the course is over. (But his past courses do not have links to the lectures.) It is great. honestly, even for topics where I have a background, I still learned something new, e.g. Bayes vs the replicability crisis in social science research. lectures:https://harvard.hosted.panopto.com/Panopto/Pages/Sessions/List.aspx#folderID=%2255a37adc-eaae-4aa6-8a06-ab25015a4ee8%22 syllabus: https://stevenpinker.com/classes/rationality-gened-1066/materials/rationality-gened-1066-syllabus
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