"WeWork Isn't a Tech Company; It's a Soap Opera"

If it weren't for the fact that when it soon comes public WeWork could well be one of the most "crowded" short trades ever--like Beyond Meat, for which I apparently massively overpaid for a few puts--I would short WeWork. This article quotes the registration statement as follows: “We are a community company committed to maximum global impact. Our mission is to elevate the world’s consciousness.”

Oh yeah, I really want to short elevating the world's consciousness.


"There’s Something Rotten in Academia"

My conjecture is that this is a widespread condition:

There was a combination of reasons why I decided to leave teaching, but the one foremost in my mind was this — I came to the conclusion that about a fourth of the students in my classes were in the wrong place. They were wasting their time, my time, and theirs’ or their parents’ money.

The issue, as I saw it, was their lack of intellectual curiosity. There’s nothing inherently wrong with that. We all have different interests. Some were there as a way of delaying adulthood for four more years. (Many of them managed to do that for five, six, or seven years.) There’s nothing essentially wrong with that either, but it ought not be subsidized with taxpayers’ money.


"How the solar business became an afterthought for Tesla"

This is yet one more example of why government should not try to pick business winners.

. . . the administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo hoped it was catching lightning in a bottle by spending $750 million in taxpayer money to land what then was a fast-growing business in a hot, environmentally friendly industry that promised to bring nearly 1,500 jobs to job-starved Buffalo. . . .

For $750 million, you expect more.

 


"The Psychology of Prediction"

A nice statement on why, like establishing causality, prediction is difficult. Sample:

3. History is the study of surprising events. Prediction is using historical data to forecast what events will happen next.

Do you see the irony?

Historical data is a good guide to the future. But the most important events in historical data are the big outliers, the record-breaking events. They are what move the needle. We use those outliers to guide our views of things like worst-case scenarios. But those record-setting events, when they occurred, had no precedent. So the forecaster who assumes the worst (and best) events of the past will match the worst (and best) events of the future is not following history; they’re accidentally assuming the history of unprecedented events happening doesn’t apply to the future.