Posts Tagged 'black swan'

Recession-Recovery… what-when? Davos in a blizzard

Taleb, the author of Black Swan, talks about growing up in Lebanon and chatting with local politicians about the latest crisis… the politician admitted he didn’t know what would happen next. This disarming frankness helped convince Taleb that his future lay in studying randomness, rather than extrapolating from a pattern that the future might follow a trend.

Warren Buffett says that, when the tide goes out, you can tell who’s wearing shorts.

Davos. A bunch of world leaders. The world media has it on the January calendar. But, it’s just been embarrassing to be in the spotlight. Gordon Brown is looking not just naked but rather grumpy about it.

David Smith, columnist in the Sunday Times (see blog here), points to Vladimir Putin saying that the banks lost in 12 months more than their combined profits in the previous 25 years. And, the Institute for Fiscal Studies says it will take 20 years to bet the British public finances back to where we were before the crisis.

The next big thing is going to be sorting out the mess we’re in. I’d say that Gordon Brown is a dead duck – there’s no way he can avoid being tarred by the regulatory mismanagement tag that has seen the whole world shot to pieces.


Davos – Big and unweildy? Or the world’s top problem solving superheroes?

I think the world has changed so radically that the Next Big Thing will not come from an old heritage place. Big things in 2007 and 2008 are crashing around us… car companies, banks, property firms (remember Foxtons?)

Angelina Jolie - World Economic Forum Annual Meeting Davos 2005 by World Economic Forum

Can Davos fix it? I somewhat doubt it – taking more the Taleb line in his book Black Swan… nobody really has a clue. Everybody’s recalibrating their world view, their balance sheet, their business model.

Tealeaf reader in chief Sir Martin Sorrell is there and blogging for the FT. See the first post here – and judge whether Martin’s got a right-hand PR that’s cranked out the copy en route so SMS can get his batting average up?

I think it’s a brilliant time to be starting a business, but a tough tough time to be steering something set up before Lehman sunk.

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