Posts filed under “Philosophy”

Nobel Laureates and Economic Prosperity

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The graphic above, via Jon Bruner of Forbes, reflects the enormous American contribution to Arts & Sciences over the past century.

What is intriguing is not just that the US has won so many prizes, but that the a third of American Nobels have gone to immigrants to the US:

“The United States has won more Nobel prizes for physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, and economics since World War II than any other country, by a wide margin (it has been less dominant in literature and peace, two awards that are much more broadly distributed among nations). At least one American has won a prize each year since 1935 (excluding the years 1940 through 1942, when no prizes were given out). And the United States became dominant after a very slow start: no American won a science prize in the first six years of the prize’s existence.”

This is important in many ways:

1. The US attracts many of the wold’s best & brightest students and future Technology and Scientific leaders;

2. Their work (eventually) leads to breakthroughs that generate tremendous economic value, creating jobs and new industries;

3. That success in turn attracts the next generation of intellectual stars, creating a virtuous circle.

4. Anything that puts this cycle at risk is a long term threat to the economic health of the US.

Which raises a few obvious questions: What is the biggest threat to this virtuous, self-reinforcing system? What is it that could derail this important component to the American engine of prosperity? And, what can we do to fix that?

Hat tip: Flowing Data

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Previously:

Is the balance of scientific power shifting? (January 16th, 2004)

Losing Our Intellectual Edge (December 22nd, 2004)

Category: Philosophy, Research, Science, Technology

QOTD: The next Steve Jobs?

Interesting quote from The New Yorker: “Who will be the next Steve Jobs? I doubt it will be Mark Zuckerberg. He gives every indication of being the next Bill Gates: a smart dude who has one great idea at the right time, builds a monopoly, and then keeps it by releasing stuff that’s good enough…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Technology

QOTD: Cult of Ignorance

Our Quote of the Day is over 30 years old: “There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that “my ignorance is…Read More

Category: Philosophy

Da Bears . . .

Chart via WSJ > I have no idea where idea that “20%” somehow defines a bear market, or where it came from. In my mind, I prefer to think of this in the context of trends. Is any market moving from lower left to upper right of the chart? That is a bull market. If…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Trading

Dear Human . . .

Source: SMBC

Category: Philosophy, Weekend

Take The Loss

Here is something that you may not think about often enough: Taking losses. Its something that every rookie trader must learn to do — and all of the TBTF banks refuse to do. Even sovereign nations seem unwilling to accept this simple fact of financial life. There will be losses. How you handle them determines…Read More

Category: Bailouts, Philosophy, Psychology, Real Estate, Really, really bad calls, Trading

TBP’s 30 Most Influential Finance Sources

Last week, I lamented that the Bloomberg 50 was a disappointingly obvious list (the event was quite good, however). Following that (Meh!) complaint, I asked readers who was their most influential managers, thinkers, traders and strategists — who impacted their trading, thinking and investment process more than the rest of the chattering classes. For obvious…Read More

Category: Data Analysis, Financial Press, Philosophy

On Rhetoric and the Art of Persuasion

Persuasion is clearly a sort of demonstration, since we are most fully persuaded when we consider a thing to have been demonstrated Of the modes of persuasion furnished by the spoken word there are three kinds. Ethos: Persuasion is achieved by the speaker’s personal character when the speech is so spoken as to make us…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Really, really bad calls

Is Social Security a Ponzi Scheme?

In the Think Tank today, John Mauldin writes about Social Security, calling it a “Catastrophic Success.” John believes SS is a Ponzi scheme, and we disagree. He comes from a different country than I do — John lives in Texas, while I live on a small island off the East Coast of America — two completely…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Really, really bad calls, Taxes and Policy

Conservative Concern: Runaway Inequality Will Destroy Economy

Conservatives and Liberals Agree: Unparalleled Levels of Inequality Is Killing Our Economy and Society Leading economists agree that rampant inequality leads to unstable economies and depressions, and makes the middle and lower classes poorer. While the stereotype is that liberals care about inequality and conservatives don’t, that is actually a myth. As Canada’s conservative National…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Think Tank, Wages & Income