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The Shipping Man & 1491


farnamstreet
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In his Columbia University lecture this year, Li Lu mentioned two books recommended by these two.

 

The first one, recommended by Mohnish Pabrai was: [amazonsearch]The Shipping Man[/amazonsearch]

 

The second one, recommended by both Charlie Munger and Pabrai was [amazonsearch]1491[/amazonsearch].

 

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Mohnish must have a shipping holding now.  Otherwise one would not be reading 'The Shipping Man' otherwise.  Both a good read and good book on what I called 'Pulling Back the Veil' on the shipping industry.

 

Cheers

JEast

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  • 1 month later...

I just finished the Shipping Man and really enjoyed the story.  I would recommend it to anyone that has an interest in the shipping business, not because of technical knowledge that you will gain, but because the author tells a great story.

 

 

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With "I don't know" I meant "I haven't read it". From 1493 I think I can guess 1491 major themes:

 

1. The underestimation of the size of the native population before Colon.

2. the hugely disproportionate role of germs in its population collapse compared with the European "advances". (like 95/5 versus guns and steel)

3. a complete misunderstanding of the native crops and techniques with an underestimation of their productivity and defense against pathogens.

4. The observed "underutilization" of nature only a misperception based of (2) and (3)

5. and the observed "savagery" just a result of the huge collapse of population and civilization.

 

But I can't know for sure his support for those assertions. However, in 1493 the parts that I knew well were accurately told, the parts I didn't know had support and acknowledgement of the ambiguities, and all in context it tells a thrilling and surprising story.

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Mohnish must have a shipping holding now.  Otherwise one would not be reading 'The Shipping Man' otherwise.  Both a good read and good book on what I called 'Pulling Back the Veil' on the shipping industry.

 

Cheers

JEast

 

Cannot find Pulling Back the Veil on Amazon. do you Mind give me a link ?

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I'm about halfway through the Shipping Man and have been a little disappointed.

 

Maybe it's because I've owner shares is Safe Bulkers for the past two years and have been reading a lot about shipping as it is, but I feel that there are much better way to learn about the industry. I guess my complaints about the book so far are

 

1) The story itself seems made up, characters are exaggerated, no real character development, etc. Overall just bad writing

2) Knowledge gained is really basic and could be likely picked up elsewhere without wasting time on a bad story

 

I haven't gained anything that I haven't been able to pick up elsewhere and I largely feel like I'm wasting my time reading it. Maybe it's a little too early to judge, but after reading half I don't know if I'll take the time to bother to finish.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Regarding the 1491 time period, I'm reading another book at present: Blood and Thunder.

 

One thing I didn't realize is how new the Navajo were to (what we now call today) the United States.

 

Here is the kids version:

http://www.historyforkids.org/learn/northamerica/after1500/history/navajo.htm

 

You know, I was under the impression that the US troops had moved the Navajo from their ancestral homeland, but if we're only talking about a Navajo presence not even 100 years old before the Spanish arrived, then that's a little different IMHO. 

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Similar in vein to 1491 and 1493 is the book The Retreat of the Elephants by Mark Elvin. Kind of an ecological or nvironmental history of the Chinese mainland. Pretty amazing when you consider that the areas around Beijing were once forested and elephants roaming the woods.

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