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The Week’s Top Articles – 08/05/16

Food for Thought:

  1. WSJ – J.D. Vance and the Anger of the White Working Class.  Vance, the author of the new book ‘Hillbilly Elegy’ is getting a lot of press for his thoughtful reflections on race and class.  Read a great interview with him here (Credit AB).  A favorite quote – We”–meaning hillbillies–“are the only group of people you don’t have to be ashamed to look down upon.”
  2. NYTimes – Choosing a School for My Daughter in a Segregated City.  An eye-opening look on the true state of segregation in our schools – spoiler alert – it is as bad as the 1960s in many cities in America.  I had the pleasure of hearing the author speak last week, this is a must read and pairs nicely with the first article from above.
  3. NYMag – Big Goals Can Backfire. Olympians Show Us What to Focus on Instead.
  4. WSJ – European Prisons Fueling Spread of Islamic Radicalism.  Convicted terrorists sit atop the social pecking order in many facilities, using jail time to plot new attacks or groom petty criminals for jihad.
  5. WSJ – Nice Cargo Shorts! You’re Sleeping on the Sofa.  Dane Hansen, who operates a small steel business in Pleasant Grove, Utah, says that throughout his 11-year marriage, 15 pairs of cargo shorts have slowly disappeared from his closet.
Business/Economics:

  1. Barrons – The founder of Grant’s Interest Rate Observer foretells fiat money’s end game, and a bull market in metals.
  2. NYTimes – The Activist and Herbalife: Just Maybe Ackman’s Right
  3. Fortune – Why ‘Network Power’ Is the Secret of Success for Apple, Facebook and Amazon
  4. EI – Is Active Management Dead? Not Even Close
  5. WSJ – The Rice Cooker Has Become a Test of China’s Ability to Fix Its Economy.  With low-cost exports on the wane, the country is struggling to make high-quality goods for a rising middle class; smartphone connectivity.
Culture/Tech/Science:

  1. NYTimes – Simone Biles is unbeatable
  2. BusinessWeek – Welcome to Zuckerworld: Facebook’s really big plans for virtual reality
  3. WSJ – Score! Piano Salesman Loans Out Free Steinways, Some Strings Attached.  Used piano salesman gives ‘hosts’ the keys until a buyer strikes
  4. MW – Why golf has gone the way of the three-martini lunch
  5. Economist – Not-so-clever contracts.  For the time being at least, human judgment is still a better bet than cold-hearted code.  But Bitcoin like technologies could transform the modern conception of contract law.
Interesting Podcasts:
No new recommendations this week, as I am knee deep in listening to Charles Duhigg’s Smarter Faster Better:  The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business.

At the core of Smarter Faster Better are eight key productivity concepts—from motivation and goal setting to focus and decision making—that explain why some people and companies get so much done. Drawing on the latest findings in neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral economics—as well as the experiences of CEOs, educational reformers, four-star generals, FBI agents, airplane pilots, and Broadway songwriters—this painstakingly researched book explains that the most productive people, companies, and organizations don’t merely act differently. They view the world, and their choices, in profoundly different ways.

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