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"Don't Eat Fortune's Cookie" - Michael Lewis


Guest hellsten
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Guest hellsten

Michael Lewis' speech at Princeton is one of the better articles I've read recently:

http://www.princeton.edu/main/news/archive/S33/87/54K53/index.xml?section

 

Some memorable quotes:

 

Wall Street had become so unhinged that it was paying recent Princeton graduates who knew nothing about money small fortunes to pretend to be experts about money.

Players got given credit for things they did that depended on the performance of others: pitchers got paid for winning games, hitters got paid for knocking in runners on base.

Players got blamed and credited for events beyond their control. Where balls that got hit happened to land on the field, for example.

if a professional athlete paid millions of dollars can be misvalued who can't be? If the supposedly pure meritocracy of professional sports can't distinguish between lucky and good, who can?

Life's outcomes, while not entirely random, have a huge amount of luck baked into them.

This leader had performed no special task. He had no special virtue. He'd been chosen at random, 30 minutes earlier. His status was nothing but luck. But it still left him with the sense that the cookie should be his.

 

I find psychological/behavioral experiments, such as the "cookie experiment", fascinating.

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Great commencement speech...thanks for posting

 

Ditto

 

Another lesson is from the speech itself:  Don't let people convince you that you shouldn't pursue something about which you're passionate.  It's trite, yes...but it remains true throughout life.

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