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What We’re Reading

Career goals:

It might seem that nothing would be easier than deciding what you like, but it turns out to be hard, partly because it’s hard to get an accurate picture of most jobs. Being a doctor is not the way it’s portrayed on TV. Fortunately you can also watch real doctors, by volunteering in hospitals.

Marc Andreeseen on timing:

I just went to college. I did my thing. I came out here in ‘94, and Silicon Valley was in hibernation. In high school, I actually thought I was going to have to learn Japanese to work in technology. My big feeling was I just missed it, I missed the whole thing. It had happened in the ’80s, and I got here too late. But then, I’m maybe the most optimistic person I know. I mean, I’m incredibly optimistic. I’m optimistic arguably to a fault, especially in terms of new ideas.

When Buffett quit his hedge fund in 1970:

To the immense regret of his limited partners, Buffett is quitting the game. His reasons for doing so are several, and include a strong feeling that his time and wealth (he is a millionaire many times over) should now be directed toward other goals than simply the making of more money. But he also suspects that some of the juice has gone out of the stock market and that sizable gains are in the future going to be very hard to come by. Consequently, he has suggested to his investors that they may want to take the “passive” way out, investing their partnership money not in the stock market but instead in municipal bonds.

Royalties:

This time of year, it’s hard to go a day without hearing Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” whether it’s playing in a store, in an Uber or on your holiday playlist. … The singer has earned more than $60 million in royalties from the song.

Experience:

Overall, 6 in 10 working-age Americans haven’t even seen inflation above 4 percent. A quarter of them haven’t even seen a sustained stretch above 3 percent.

Amazon:

The way Bezos sees it, he built a lemonade stand that did really well. So he took the money from the lemonade stand and he built a hot dog stand, and a hamburger stand, and so on.

That has always been the plan for Amazon. Invest its profits in new lines of business. Amazon’s investors know that’s the deal and are OK with it.

This is why Apple couldn’t suddenly shift gears and say, “We’re going to forgo profits to pursue market share!” That’s not the company people are investing in.

So, if you’re starting a company and you want to be like Amazon, do it from day one.

Have a good weekend.


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