What Book Are YOU Currently Reading? PART II

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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bearwolf
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Finally got round to it

Post by bearwolf » Tue Sep 23, 2008 9:12 pm

The Bogleheads guide to investing.

BearWolf

AlwaysaQ
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Post by AlwaysaQ » Tue Sep 23, 2008 11:26 pm

I recently took down from the shelf a book I had bought earlier but hadn't read; Freedom from Fear: The American People in Depression and War by David M. Kennedy. It won the Pulitzer Prize for history in 2000 and is part of the Oxford History of the United States. A huge book; I hope I have enough time to finish it.

.

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Post by Valuethinker » Wed Sep 24, 2008 3:07 am

AlwaysaQ wrote:I recently took down from the shelf a book I had bought earlier but hadn't read; Freedom from Fear: The American People in Depression and War by David M. Kennedy. It won the Pulitzer Prize for history in 2000 and is part of the Oxford History of the United States. A huge book; I hope I have enough time to finish it.

.
It's a fantastic book, and was later reissued as 2 parts-- one covering the Depression and one covering WWII.

All of the Oxford Histories of the US are excellent (of the ones I have read): most notably James M. Macpherson 'Battle Cry of Freedom' which is the best 1-volume history of the Civil War.

James T Patterson's books on postwar America are also excellent.

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Post by AlwaysaQ » Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:46 am

Valuethinker,

I also have on the shelf "The Glorious Cause" and "Battle Cry of Freedom" which I haven't yet read. I also want to read the Patterson books in the series but I don't own them now. Thanks for the recommendation.

.

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Promethean
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Post by Promethean » Thu Sep 25, 2008 10:29 am

The case against the Fed - Murry Rothbard
From the Austrian school of economics.

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giacolet
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Currrently reading ...

Post by giacolet » Thu Sep 25, 2008 3:53 pm

I'm revisiting an old classic, The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason. I've never forgotton the slogan of the ancients, "A part of all you earn is yours to keep."

The book has a collection of parables on saving, which is the fundamental first principle of investing.

I'm also rereading my favorite poet Seamus Heaney's The Spirit Level. He's the Irish Nobel laureate. His translation of Beowulf is also interesting. The attacks and killings of the monster Grendle is a symbol for Heaney of the hate killings in Northern Ireland.
Last edited by giacolet on Fri Sep 26, 2008 9:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
May your heart always be joyful. | May your song always be sung. | May you stay forever young. | ----Bob Dylan

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Post by chaz » Thu Sep 25, 2008 4:58 pm

I have finally arrived at Chapter 35, page 623. The story ends on page 779. "A Place of Hiding" by Elizabeth George, a truly fascinating story of murder and motives. Compelling.
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giacolet
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Re: Currrently reading ...

Post by giacolet » Thu Sep 25, 2008 8:18 pm

giacolet wrote:I'm revisiting an old classic, The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason. I've never forgotton the slogan of the ancients, "A part of all you earn is yours to keep."

The book has a collection of parables on saving, which is the fundamental first principle of investing.

I'm also rereading my favorite poet Seamus Heaney's The Spirit Level. He's the Irish Nobel laureate. His translation of Beowulf is also interesting. The attacks and killings of the monster Grendle is a symbol for Heaney of the hate killings in Northern Ireland.
May your heart always be joyful. | May your song always be sung. | May you stay forever young. | ----Bob Dylan

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BigFoot48
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Post by BigFoot48 » Thu Sep 25, 2008 9:11 pm

I'm reading Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson and the wife is reading Anathem also by Neal. When we are done with these 900 page books, we will swap. Then they both go to the large used book store for recycling.

We are also listening to Neal's Snow Crash on MP3 in our car on long trips.
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Post by TheEternalVortex » Thu Sep 25, 2008 10:03 pm

I am reading American Pastoral by Philip Roth. It's very good.

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VictoriaF
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Re: Alexander McCall Smith

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Sep 26, 2008 6:29 am

Valuethinker wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:I just finished marathon reading of McCall Smith. (...) I had withdrawal symptoms and moved to The Sunday Philosophy Club series and the 44 Scotland Street series.

Now, I want to go to Edinburgh ;)
Well, think St. Petersburg. But without the mosquitoes ;-).

You have 2 choices: Festival or not Festival (August).
Is this an inclusive OR? ;)
Last edited by VictoriaF on Fri Sep 26, 2008 7:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

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VictoriaF
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Ian Rankin

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Sep 26, 2008 6:33 am

runthetrails wrote:
Currently reading
(...)

Audiobooks:
We're listening to Ian Rankin's John Rebus series in the car
How do you like Ian Rankin? I have first heard about him when listening to Alexander McCall Smith's books on tape and was not even sure he was a real person until I checked Wikipedia.

Thanks,
Victoria

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runthetrails
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Re: Ian Rankin

Post by runthetrails » Fri Sep 26, 2008 9:17 am

VictoriaF wrote:
runthetrails wrote:
Currently reading
(...)

Audiobooks:
We're listening to Ian Rankin's John Rebus series in the car
How do you like Ian Rankin? I have first heard about him when listening to Alexander McCall Smith's books on tape and was not even sure he was a real person until I checked Wikipedia.

Thanks,
Victoria
I'm quite enjoying them, mostly due to the John Rebus character. At first glance he's a pretty standard no-nonsense working class character, but he has a vivid interior life as well. I suspect that I may miss some subtleties due to the odd colloquialism, but overall it's quite accessible to the American reader. My understanding is that these are quite popular in the UK, although lesser known here.

It's interesting how my mental picture of a protagonist is more dependent upon the voice of the narrator than on any description from the narrative. The narrator for the first 2 books (Ewan Stewart) sounds just like Robert Carlyle to me, so that is how I picture Rebus. We're on the 3rd book now, with a different narrator, and I'm not relating as well.

Edited to add that I tried reading A. M. Smith's first Isabel Dalhousie book and couldn't stick with it. I found it to be too slow, at least for my mood at the time.

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VictoriaF
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Re: Ian Rankin

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Sep 26, 2008 1:08 pm

runthetrails wrote:
I'm quite enjoying them, mostly due to the John Rebus character. At first glance he's a pretty standard no-nonsense working class character, but he has a vivid interior life as well. I suspect that I may miss some subtleties due to the odd colloquialism, but overall it's quite accessible to the American reader. My understanding is that these are quite popular in the UK, although lesser known here.

It's interesting how my mental picture of a protagonist is more dependent upon the voice of the narrator than on any description from the narrative. The narrator for the first 2 books (Ewan Stewart) sounds just like Robert Carlyle to me, so that is how I picture Rebus. We're on the 3rd book now, with a different narrator, and I'm not relating as well.

Edited to add that I tried reading A. M. Smith's first Isabel Dalhousie book and couldn't stick with it. I found it to be too slow, at least for my mood at the time.
Thanks a lot. I am now interested enough to start reading Ian Rankin.

And I agree about the impact of the narrator's voice on the book-on-tape experience.

Victoria

medgar
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Post by medgar » Fri Sep 26, 2008 2:17 pm

Required reading by the end of next week class.

The Calvin and Hobbs collection
The Far Side
Classic Peanuts.

We all need a good laugh and reflection.

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steersman
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Post by steersman » Fri Sep 26, 2008 5:33 pm

I just started Benjamin Graham's Intelligent Investor for the second time around. It was the book that ultimately lead me to Boglehead's Guide.

Dave

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CountryBoy
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A Boglehead Book

Post by CountryBoy » Mon Sep 29, 2008 2:36 pm

I finished reading the book Ahead of the Curve by Philip Delves Broughton last week.

It is a perfect fit for a Diehard of any ilk. It is about a Dalily Telegraph reporter, Oxford graduate, who at the age of 31 goes to Harvard Business School for an MBA.

It is excellent and very difficult to put down.

This Boglehead forum is all about drilling down and that is what this book does. Educational, entertaining and engrossing. But you have to read it all to understand the ending......

Beautifully written,

enjoy
countryboy

chaz
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Post by chaz » Mon Sep 29, 2008 3:14 pm

"Last Man Standing" by David Baldacci,
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ajtanner04
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Post by ajtanner04 » Wed Oct 01, 2008 8:00 pm

Alone by William Manchester. Its the 2nd book in his series: The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill. Its a long book but its absolutely fascinating. I highly suggest it.

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Jethro2007
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Post by Jethro2007 » Fri Oct 10, 2008 3:24 am

Hey all,

Wow, I am truly in debt to who ever suggested reading, In Defense of Food,
by Michael Pollan...

In less than 201 pages, I feel, I have roled back all the BS that has been crammed down my throat by the Pseudo-nutrition pyramid and Low Fat boasting diet mongers...over the past 30 years or so...

Now, if I could only find a(the) Market that could function like my diet is supposed to, I might feel comfortable about investing for retirement...

Best of luck to all...

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JDub02
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Post by JDub02 » Fri Oct 10, 2008 7:40 am

nonfiction: Bogleheads Guide To Investing

fiction: just finished The Last Commandment by Brad Thor. about to start The Last Patriot by Brad Thor. I've been working through all of Glenn Beck's featured authors from this past summer and, so far, all have been fantastic.

My wife just finished The Last Lecture and said it was incredible.

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gatorking
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Current book

Post by gatorking » Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:18 am

"Overtreated" by Shannon Brownlee

Can't recommend this book enough, even though I haven't finished it yet (about 2/3 done).

philip51
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Post by philip51 » Fri Oct 10, 2008 9:53 am

I'm reading The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

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Post by chaz » Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:18 am

"With No One As Witness" by Elizabeth George.
Chaz | | “Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons." Woody Allen | | http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

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Post by nisiprius » Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:46 am

Recently finished The Little Book of Common Sense Investing, by John C. Bogle.

Dipping in here and there into America's Boardwalks: From Coney Island to California by James Lilliefors.

Slowly reading my way through The Elephant and the Dragon: The Rise of India and China and What It Means for All of Us, by Robyn Meredith, which my wife enthusiastically recommend and which I'm finding quite interesting.

Oh, and I'm about to start To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee. No, not for the first time.
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Post by ryuns » Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:53 am

I'm starting to think my choice of "The Road" by Cormac McCarthy will be helpful guide to the post-apocalypse. I didn't realize when I started that it would be so educational. :shock:

Ryan
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Post by chaz » Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:34 am

chaz wrote:"With No One As Witness" by Elizabeth George.
As I get farther into this book, I recommend it. A truly gripping novel by a great author.
Chaz | | “Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons." Woody Allen | | http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

Ddiego
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What book are you currently reading, partII

Post by Ddiego » Fri Oct 17, 2008 12:09 am

Exile, by James Patterson

An American Jew, an attorney, represents a Palestinian arrested in the US for the murder of the Israeli Prime Minister. Reader gains insight regarding mid east cultural conflicts.

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stratton
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Post by stratton » Fri Oct 17, 2008 5:15 am

Zvi Bodies Worry Free Investing. With TIPS at multi-year real yield highs its time for another read along with Spend til the End. At 3% real yield doing the no stock thing might actually work and provide a margin of safety a 2.25% real yield wouldn't. A 3% real yield is getting into the low end of previously expected stock returns of 6 to 8%.

Paul

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HueyLD
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Post by HueyLD » Fri Oct 17, 2008 8:22 am

Paul,

A while back, you published a Table of Content for Larry Swedroe's upcoming Alternative Investments book. Can you publish that TOC again? Thanks.

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stratton
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Post by stratton » Fri Oct 17, 2008 9:47 am

HueyLD wrote:Paul,

A while back, you published a Table of Content for Larry Swedroe's upcoming Alternative Investments book. Can you publish that TOC again? Thanks.
This thread contains the ToC and the Introduction with a link to the book on Amazon.

Larry's Alternatives Book available for pre-order

Code: Select all

Introduction
The Good, the Flawed, the Bad, and the Ugly

Part 1. The Good
1. Real Estate
2. Commodities
3. International Equities
4. Inflation-Protected Securities
5. Fixed Annuities
6. Stable-Value Funds

Part 2. The Flawed
1. High-Yield (Junk) Bonds
2. Private Equity (Venture) Capital
3. Covered Calls
4. Socially Responsible Mutual Funds
5. Precious Metals Equities
6. Preferred Stocks
7. Convertible Bonds
8. Emerging-Market Bonds

Part 3. The Bad
1. Hedge Funds
2. Leveraged Buyouts
3. Variable Annuities

Part 4. The Ugly
1. Equity-Indexed Annuities
2. Structured Investment Products
3. Leveraged Funds
Paul

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Post by chaz » Fri Oct 17, 2008 10:43 am

Because I enjoyed it so much, I am re-reading "Violets Are Blue" by James Patterson.
Chaz | | “Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons." Woody Allen | | http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

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Post by runthetrails » Fri Oct 17, 2008 12:16 pm

Skimmed through Running Within, by Jerry Lynch and Warren Scott. Not my cup of tea, as I'm much too skeptical of mind-body-spirit literature. But a friend who is a superior runner liked it, so I gave it a shot. I'm not saying that relaxation, visualization, etc. are not useful, but in my case I could improve much more by dropping a few pounds and training more (I only run 3-4 days per week).

Just finished Nudge, by Thaler and Sunstein. Some interesting ideas here. For example, I for one would probably be willing to waive my right to sue for malpractice in return for lowered insurance/medical costs. According to Nudge, a very high percentage of malpractice suits are frivolous, including those where damages are awarded. Also, government-mandated disclosure in a common format to compare financial products, insurance, etc, could aid comparison in the same way that nutritional labeling helps us understand more about the foods we buy. And likewise require an annual breakdown of all fees and charges assessed to accounts like cell phones, credit cards, etc. How about instant feedback on your thermostat, showing the $/hour cost of the setting?

About to start reading Capital Ideas, by Peter L. Bernstein.

On audio...
We're still listening to the John Rebus series in the car.

I listened to and greatly enjoyed The Undercover Economist, by John Harford. Thank you, Valuethinker, for this recommendation.

On my player for future listening:
Fooled by Randomness, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Stalking the Unicorn, by Mike Resnick
The Big Time, by Fritz Leiber
Full House, by Stephen Jay Gould

wide eyed
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Post by wide eyed » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:48 pm

I just finished NUDGE and then Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely. Both point out that we homo sapiens are not as sapient as we like to think!


I am also reading Predator State by James Galbraith. I am not done yet so I am suspending judgment; but it is compelling as it seems to be a decent explanation for what went wrong here though written before it went wrong...

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zookeeper24
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Post by zookeeper24 » Sat Oct 18, 2008 12:25 am

Reading "Desperate Voyage" by John Caldwell... a wonderful true sailing adventure.

Also re-reading "The Millionaire Next Door" to convince myself that my 10 y/o car is fine and I don't need to buy a newer model.

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Reading

Post by Brad H » Sat Oct 18, 2008 10:04 am

I am about 25% into Thomas Friedman's Hot. Flat and Crowded and it is about to scare me to death.

I need to hurry up and finish it to see if he offers any hope. Until starting this book i had not lost a moments sleep with all of the market turmoil. Now i am anxious, but still sleeping pretty good.

Has anyone else read this book? or can you offer some encouragement on how innovation will help us manage increased world population, global warming and limited resources?

Thanks,
brad

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Judsen
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Post by Judsen » Sat Oct 18, 2008 11:39 am

I'm about 2/3rds through "A Splendid Exchange" by Wm J Bernstein and am enjoying it very much.
Jud

jmuc85
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Post by jmuc85 » Sun Oct 19, 2008 8:31 pm

The Informant...I'm 200 pages in, and thus far, it has been excellent, with many twists already.

It's a nonfiction dealing with the huge scandal involving price fixing by Archer Daniels Midland back in the 90s. It's a very interesting read so far, and highly recommend it to nonfiction lovers and/or history buffs (albeit recent history).

satori
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Post by satori » Sun Oct 19, 2008 8:52 pm

The Fire by Katherine Neville
This is the much-awaited sequel to The Eight, written 20 years ago (yes, much awaited). It has just come out and I was one of the first on the library wait list. :)
Genre: historical fiction, mystery, intrigue
Neville is known for her style of weaving together two interesting story lines, one set in the present and one set in an historical period.

mucomix
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Post by mucomix » Sun Oct 19, 2008 9:17 pm

I just did finish Empire of Debt … The rise of an epic financial crisis. By Bill Bonner and Addison Wiggin. I thought it was a good read. I felt it was disjointed (likely just me) until about page 80-90 then it got going. Another one of those books that may match up with how you see the world. But there is nothing you are going to do about it.

This weekend I started The Devil We Know…Dealing with the new Iranian superpower by Robert Baer. 2-3 weeks ago I caught part of a NPR show he was on. He has a view of Iran I have never heard before. The first 40 pages are interesting but I see when I done with it I’m going to have to look a lot of things up then reread it so I have a better idea who the groups are.
BBQ and Boulevard Wheat will be the death of me.. But not a bad way to go..

knothead
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Post by knothead » Tue Oct 21, 2008 9:04 pm

The Day the Bubble Burst: A Social History of the Wall Street Crash of 1929. The parallels are eerie.

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johnoutk
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Post by johnoutk » Tue Oct 21, 2008 10:05 pm

Confessions of a Subprime Lender by Richard Bitner

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Post by schellhase » Tue Oct 21, 2008 10:45 pm

Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin, actually I finished it last night and I am sorry that is is over. I was thinking of reading Bruce Catton's trilogy on the civil war next, but it may be too much of a rehash.

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Post by johnjtaylorus » Wed Oct 22, 2008 10:40 pm

2.7 million served in Vietnam.

The M-79 had flechette and 40 mm sabot.

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Post by Valuethinker » Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:13 am

runthetrails wrote:
Just finished Nudge, by Thaler and Sunstein. Some interesting ideas here. For example, I for one would probably be willing to waive my right to sue for malpractice in return for lowered insurance/medical costs. According to Nudge, a very high percentage of malpractice suits are frivolous, including those where damages are awarded. Also, government-mandated disclosure in a common format to compare financial products, insurance, etc, could aid comparison in the same way that nutritional labeling helps us understand more about the foods we buy. And likewise require an annual breakdown of all fees and charges assessed to accounts like cell phones, credit cards, etc. How about instant feedback on your thermostat, showing the $/hour cost of the setting?
What you need is a litigation system that protects you against the worst cases eg disablement for life which are unbearable financial losses.

If a kid gets hurt by a swimming pool drain (as several were by the make of pool) then that could be a lifetime of cost. (It was, and the lawyer won $6m after showing that the firm had ignored several earlier accidents of the same type).

What we could trade against lower insurance costs is a higher level of self-insurance. I've certainly never claimed on our household insurance (because higher premiums would make it worthless).

I listened to and greatly enjoyed The Undercover Economist, by John Harford. Thank you, Valuethinker, for this recommendation.


Stalking the Unicorn, by Mike Resnick
The Big Time, by Fritz Leiber
Full House, by Stephen Jay Gould
Mike Resnick is very good.

Fritz Leiber is excellent. See especially 'The Dying Earth' series.

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Post by Valuethinker » Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:13 am

schellhase wrote:Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin, actually I finished it last night and I am sorry that is is over. I was thinking of reading Bruce Catton's trilogy on the civil war next, but it may be too much of a rehash.
James Macpherson is better on the Civil War-- much more up to date.

Shelby Foote has a great prose style if you are up for a 3 volume read on ACW.

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Post by Valuethinker » Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:27 am

mucomix wrote:I just did finish Empire of Debt … The rise of an epic financial crisis. By Bill Bonner and Addison Wiggin. I thought it was a good read. I felt it was disjointed (likely just me) until about page 80-90 then it got going. Another one of those books that may match up with how you see the world. But there is nothing you are going to do about it.

This weekend I started The Devil We Know…Dealing with the new Iranian superpower by Robert Baer. 2-3 weeks ago I caught part of a NPR show he was on. He has a view of Iran I have never heard before. The first 40 pages are interesting but I see when I done with it I’m going to have to look a lot of things up then reread it so I have a better idea who the groups are.
Baer spent his life fighting the Iranians. In fact, arguably, the Lockberbie Flight (Pan Am 802) bomb which killed 200 people was aimed at Baer (but caught his colleague instead).

He is perceptive, but was a 'loose cannon' within the CIA.

There's an Israeli journalist who has just written a book about the long intelligence war with Iran.

The thing that needs to be understood is that the Iranian secret service is, conceptually, at least 2500 years old. It gave the Greeks headaches. They invented this game to an extent.

And they play for keeps. As in the car bombing of the US Marines in Beirut-- 241 of them.

Conversely Iran itself is a divided country with very serious problems-- unemployment of over 20%, drug addiction, economic depression. At some point, that Regime will have to alter radically. There are many similarities with the Soviet Union before the 1990 collapse.

And within the Iranian government different factions struggle brutally for control.

But they are the Middle East's toughest and most brutal intelligence agency (other than the Israeli ones).

Iran is the only country in the Middle East the Israelis really fear.

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Post by Valuethinker » Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:29 am

johnjtaylorus wrote:2.7 million served in Vietnam.

The M-79 had flechette and 40 mm sabot.
That presumably doesn't include all the Vietnamese who served in what they call 'The American War'?

Did you know that outside their homes they have resting stations for the ghosts of dead soldiers and ancestors who pass by?

They put out American dollars and American souvenirs, so if the ghosts of GIs pass by, they will feel at home. I found that very moving, somehow.
Last edited by Valuethinker on Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Reading

Post by Valuethinker » Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:33 am

Brad H wrote:I am about 25% into Thomas Friedman's Hot. Flat and Crowded and it is about to scare me to death.

I need to hurry up and finish it to see if he offers any hope. Until starting this book i had not lost a moments sleep with all of the market turmoil. Now i am anxious, but still sleeping pretty good.

Has anyone else read this book? or can you offer some encouragement on how innovation will help us manage increased world population, global warming and limited resources?

Thanks,
brad
Hi

Tim Flannery. The Weather Makers. A better book-- Flannery is a scientist, but writes very well.

http://www.theweathermakers.org/

Also see Elizabeth Kohlbert 'Field Notes from a Catastrophe'. Her style is excellent.

Neither book will cheer you up*, but they might cause you to take action: join appropriate groups etc.


* history says we will manage population and resource constraints. Pollution and species destruction are the challenges we have yet to deal with.

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Post by arthurdawg » Thu Oct 23, 2008 8:41 pm

April 1865 by Jay Winik... detailing the important events of that month!
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