Jump to content


Member Since 29 Jan 2006
Offline Last Active Today, 01:21 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Philosophers' Jokes

27 June 2015 - 04:49 PM

Said by Hospers to be the funniest thing Rand ever heard:


Behaviorist comes across a colleague on campus and says "You're fine.  How am I?"

In Topic: Au Revoir, la France

18 June 2015 - 06:40 PM

Say what you will, the cathedrals are amazing.

In Topic: Coulter Surprised Me

11 June 2015 - 07:02 PM

One explanation I've seen is that medieval Europe was an experiment in selective breeding.  Intellectually talented Christians went into the religious life and had no children.  An intellectually talented Jew was a prime marital catch and was encouraged to marry and raise a family.

In Topic: Will The Real Friedrich Nietzsche Please Stand Up?

11 June 2015 - 02:04 PM

The Wikipedia article on Nietzsche backs this up.  I wonder why the story isn't better known.

In Topic: it's coming...

11 June 2015 - 11:49 AM

Throughout history, a reliable way to become famous and wealthy has been to predict disaster.  More specifically, it's been to predict the kind of disaster that one can avoid by ponying up to join the elect.  This is how religions have used judgement day, armageddon or the rapture.  During the Kennedy era it was bomb shelters, which morphed straightforwardly into Y2K disaster kits and, in California, earthquake preparedness kits.


Books, seminars and investment services that predict imminent doom are yet another version of this.  Harry Browne got on to the bestseller list this way, Casey and Ruff rode his momentum, and Ravi Bhatra sold a leftist version of the same.  Browne was, like the bomb-shelter crowd, even recommending that we lay in a survival kit of bottled water, guns and silver dimes.


I remember seeing an article in Esquire some years ago which looked back on various pop investment books including Browne, Casey and Ruff.  It reported how the books had sold and calculated what an investor would have made following their advice.  The doomsdayers had sold plenty of books, but their advice, by then, would have cost an investor money.  The only one whose advice turned out well had said, in 1982, the bottom of the Volcker downturn, that stocks are undervalued and that one would be wise to get into the market.  It sank without a trace.