Weekend Reading

It’s been a while since I did a weekend reading post, I have a lot of great links in the folder from the past few weeks.  Peruse at your own speed, there’s a lot here, but it’s all pretty cool.

Our kids in the United States are spoiled and lazy, especially when it comes to school.  Parents complain about their kids’ stress levels, being overworked, on and on.  You don’t hear any of that out of the Chinese, they’re hungry for what we have and willing to work for it.  Testing is important in everything you do in life.  When something isn’t moving on the course you need it to, you pivot, or work to fix what’s wrong.  You can only figure that out through testing. (Testing, the Chinese Way – NYT)

Hilarious from Ritholtz

Awesome piece on David Tepper (Ready to Be Rich – New York Magazine)

Great piece on how much lying Americans do when it comes to their religious beliefs.  (Religious Outlier – NYT)

Connected to the previous piece, what’s the correlation between wealth and religion?  I need not go any further, pretty obvious. (Religiosity Highest in World’s Poorest Nations – Gallup Global Reports)

Huxley was right, Orwell was wrong.

Very well said by Seth Godin in not so many words.  Great writers don’t need many.

Rare earth metals prices are rising, rapidly, this trend is no joke. (Kaiser Research Online)

Great video on Steve Jobs (Bloomberg)

The Tampa Bay Lightning of the NHL are playing an extremely fast and energetic brand of hockey.  They aren’t the first to do this, and already it looks like their brand of hockey is wearing them down.  The NHL season is the longest of any, and there’s a great saying, “you don’t win the Stanley Cup, you survive it.”  Nothing could be more true, the hockey season is brutal, it’s exhausting, at certain points it’s down right boring.  Run and gun style teams like the Lightning this year have had success, but more often than not it’s teams like the Devils of the last decade who just wear you down night after night by being physical and disciplined which go on to win several championships.  On the other side, it’s teams like the Red Wings also from the last decade who consistently win because they have superior talent and play a puck possession game.  They don’t go running around after the puck the whole night, rushing up and down the ice, they play a Soviet style brand of hockey where giving the puck away is the last thing you want to do, because that means you need to spend energy getting it back.  It will be interesting to see how long Tampa can keep this up, they are extremely talented, and their brand is very uncomfortable to play against.  My bet is that although it’s extremely fun to watch, it won’t go far in the Stanley Cup playoffs.  (A Hockey Team With A Turbocharger – WSJ)

The Chinese aren’t worried about anything else than getting rich, put everything else aside when thinking about China’s and the Chinese people’s motives (In China, It’s All About Prosperity, Not Freedom – Washington Post)

Rejection Therapy

Why are we not hearing more about this stuff?  I believe.

Tom Friedman nails it on India. (It’s Morning In India – NYT)

India going into space, with our help. (Foreign Policy In Focus)

Don’t Get Stockblocked (The Reformed Broker) – By the way, Josh is killing it right now on the financial media side of things.  I can’t believe how his brand has just exploded over the past six months.  He is an amazing testament to what a good trader with a sharp tongue can do with social media tools to build a brand.  On top of it all he’s a stand up guy (you don’t find many in this business).  I’m lucky to know and work with him, he proves every day what’s possible and how fast the financial media landscape is changing.

I don’t comment much on immigration policy here, but it’s extremely important in a globalizing world.  Look at what happened to Japan when their population got wealthy and old.  They are in some deep shit over there demographically.  No fiscal or economic policy is going to change their situation.  Fact, poor people have more kids, it’s true the world over.  Fact, kids take up less resources than old people and contribute more to society.  Rich countries need immigration to keep their populations from getting too old, and to provide a source of low cost labor.  Now I’m all for doing it the legal way, but in the face of an immigration policy that is for shit, I honestly don’t care about immigrants coming in illegally.  We need these people, and we need them to be operating within the law, so instead of bitching about their illegal status, focus your energy on bitching to your government about making it easier to come into this country and legally.  (The Death of Births – The Economist)

National Geographic best photo contest.  This is incredible.  My vote is for #10.

A long but extremely important article on the uphill battle the Chinese are going to have in regards to stoking domestic spending.  Take some time and read. (In China, Cultivating the Urge to Splurge – NYT)

OkCupid is a dating site started by friend’s of my cousin from Stanford Business School.  These guys are complete nerds, they are obsessed with data, dating was just the subject they chose, it could have been anything.  Not only is OkCupid going to wipe the floor with Match.com and other dating sites, they are doing some really interesting analysis of their database.  At StockTwits, we are learning a lot from their site, in a social sense, and with how they are displaying their data.  Their blog OkTrends is amazing and if you want to get an unvarnished look at people’s real view of themselves and the world, this is a blog you should be reading.  (The REAL stuff “white people like” – OkTrends)

You are a dumb pipe, get used to it. (Business Week)

How cool is this, a complete demographic map of the country (NYT)

Pretty amazing the speed with which the retail industry is shifting right now.  I love when technology makes the world flatter and forces people, companies, and governments to be more transparent.  A brick and mortar retail store can no longer mark up the price of a product because the consumer doesn’t have a way to quickly check if they can get it cheaper somewhere else.  This is a huge problem for a lot of retailers, especially Wal-Mart.  That stock has gone nowhere for a long time and I doubt it will anytime soon, dead money.  What retailers and brands will survive and thrive in this kind of environment?  Stores that provide an experience to the consumer beyond just paying for the product on the spot, or retailers that offer very specialized products that you can’t just get on Amazon from another seller.  Great read.  (Phone Weilding Shoppers Strike Fear Into Retailers – WSJ)

You’ve heard me rant here before about how Groupon should buy Foursquare.  Liz Gannes from All Things Digital is on board.  It makes so much sense it’s hurting my brain.  Just buy them already Groupon! (Forget Goopon – Why a Groupon/Foursquare Combo Makes More Sense)

Have a great weekend.

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