Although a bit dry in places for general readers, Fortune subscribers and those interested in investing will enjoy this...

TAP DANCING TO WORK

WARREN BUFFETT ON PRACTICALLY EVERYTHING, 1966-2012

A collection of articles on economics and investing from and about one of the wealthiest men in the world.

"In 1966 he was the proprietor of an unfamous hedge fund, Buffett Partnership Ltd., and the controlling shareowner and de facto CEO of a small New England textile company, Berkshire Hathaway, with $49 million in annual revenues," writes Fortune senior editor at large Loomis, as she discusses more than 80 articles covering the investing history of Warren Buffett. “By 2011, Berkshire was No. 7 in the Fortune 500, with $144 billion in revenues.” Serious investors as well as those interested in the history of Berkshire Hathaway and the philanthropic ideas of Buffett will enjoy these revealing pieces extracted from the Fortune archives. Having written many of the original articles herself, Loomis offers new insights into the various phases and actions of her close personal friend. Chronologically arranged, the commentaries begin in 1966, when Buffett was first mentioned in Fortune (an article in which his name was misspelled) and move through his latest thoughts and actions on philanthropy based on a dinner held for the uber-rich in 2010. The editor also includes an excerpt from the 2012 version of the annual letter to shareholders. Several of the pieces are written by Buffett, providing readers with personal insights from one of the greatest investors in history, and one piece by Bill Gates illuminates how these two men can look at the same idea from totally different angles—not only between themselves, but different from the rest of the world as well.

Although a bit dry in places for general readers, Fortune subscribers and those interested in investing will enjoy this multifaceted, well-balanced compilation.

Pub Date: Nov. 21, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-59184-573-7

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Portfolio

Review Posted Online: Oct. 23, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2012

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Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our...

THINKING, FAST AND SLOW

A psychologist and Nobel Prize winner summarizes and synthesizes the recent decades of research on intuition and systematic thinking.

The author of several scholarly texts, Kahneman (Emeritus Psychology and Public Affairs/Princeton Univ.) now offers general readers not just the findings of psychological research but also a better understanding of how research questions arise and how scholars systematically frame and answer them. He begins with the distinction between System 1 and System 2 mental operations, the former referring to quick, automatic thought, the latter to more effortful, overt thinking. We rely heavily, writes, on System 1, resorting to the higher-energy System 2 only when we need or want to. Kahneman continually refers to System 2 as “lazy”: We don’t want to think rigorously about something. The author then explores the nuances of our two-system minds, showing how they perform in various situations. Psychological experiments have repeatedly revealed that our intuitions are generally wrong, that our assessments are based on biases and that our System 1 hates doubt and despises ambiguity. Kahneman largely avoids jargon; when he does use some (“heuristics,” for example), he argues that such terms really ought to join our everyday vocabulary. He reviews many fundamental concepts in psychology and statistics (regression to the mean, the narrative fallacy, the optimistic bias), showing how they relate to his overall concerns about how we think and why we make the decisions that we do. Some of the later chapters (dealing with risk-taking and statistics and probabilities) are denser than others (some readers may resent such demands on System 2!), but the passages that deal with the economic and political implications of the research are gripping.

Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our minds.

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-374-27563-1

Page Count: 512

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Sept. 4, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2011

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A timely, vividly realized reminder to slow down and harness the restorative wonders of serenity.

STILLNESS IS THE KEY

An exploration of the importance of clarity through calmness in an increasingly fast-paced world.

Austin-based speaker and strategist Holiday (Conspiracy: Peter Thiel, Hulk Hogan, Gawker, and the Anatomy of Intrigue, 2018, etc.) believes in downshifting one’s life and activities in order to fully grasp the wonder of stillness. He bolsters this theory with a wide array of perspectives—some based on ancient wisdom (one of the author’s specialties), others more modern—all with the intent to direct readers toward the essential importance of stillness and its “attainable path to enlightenment and excellence, greatness and happiness, performance as well as presence.” Readers will be encouraged by Holiday’s insistence that his methods are within anyone’s grasp. He acknowledges that this rare and coveted calm is already inside each of us, but it’s been worn down by the hustle of busy lives and distractions. Recognizing that this goal requires immense personal discipline, the author draws on the representational histories of John F. Kennedy, Buddha, Tiger Woods, Fred Rogers, Leonardo da Vinci, and many other creative thinkers and scholarly, scientific texts. These examples demonstrate how others have evolved past the noise of modern life and into the solitude of productive thought and cleansing tranquility. Holiday splits his accessible, empowering, and sporadically meandering narrative into a three-part “timeless trinity of mind, body, soul—the head, the heart, the human body.” He juxtaposes Stoic philosopher Seneca’s internal reflection and wisdom against Donald Trump’s egocentric existence, with much of his time spent “in his bathrobe, ranting about the news.” Holiday stresses that while contemporary life is filled with a dizzying variety of “competing priorities and beliefs,” the frenzy can be quelled and serenity maintained through a deliberative calming of the mind and body. The author shows how “stillness is what aims the arrow,” fostering focus, internal harmony, and the kind of holistic self-examination necessary for optimal contentment and mind-body centeredness. Throughout the narrative, he promotes that concept mindfully and convincingly.

A timely, vividly realized reminder to slow down and harness the restorative wonders of serenity.

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-525-53858-5

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Portfolio

Review Posted Online: July 21, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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