There is Always A Crisis
The World Is Always On Fire
If this is your first time to the newsletter and want a primer on why you are here, see here.
Two weeks ago I was chatting with a buddy of mine and we were talking about how things were going. I made some comment about how the world was on fire and things were definitely stranger than normal. His retort involved a level of surprise - “sure COVID-19 was bad, but had something else happened?”
He had been somewhat off-the-grid, so he hadn’t heard about the George Floyd-related protests, the riots in Minneapolis, and, you may remember (even though it feels like an eternity ago) the Donald Trump Twitter Fact Checking fiasco. I listed those things out and told him that they seemed particularly bad this time. (I know, in the light of things, it seems silly to lump the Twitter-Trump feud in the same bucket as everything else, but I do think that will end up being a bigger deal than we think).
My buddies response, after doing some of his own research, was the following gif:
I don’t think that response was unwarranted. Things do seem particularly crazy right now. Which is nuts because three weeks ago, it didn’t seem like they could get any crazier and then: boom, it happened.
It may sound glib, but I always try and think about everything through the lens of investing. Not in the sense of “how can I make an investment profit because of what’s going on”, but in the sense of “how can I invest my current time, thoughts, and other resources to the current matters at hand.” How should I most effectively contemplate what’s going on? Where should I spend the most amount of my energy? This exercise is not always effective, but it’s at least a helpful mental model. It’s a good reminder that my resources - whether I like it or not - are extremely finite. I, as one person, can only do so much about any one situation. So I need to be as smart and tactical about that situation as possible.
The biggest thing I try to keep in mind is that there is always a crisis. Sometimes it’s appropriate to see a crisis and keep your cool. Sometimes it’s important to be in the middle of a crisis and completely flip your switch and go into overdrive. Some crises require reflection, some reaction, some reduction. And some don’t require anything at all. You need to keep a cool-head, but not necessarily a calm-mind. The real skill is recognizing your fight-or-flight reaction and putting the correct one to action.
The world is always on fire. It’s our job to do something about it.
Probably one of the most important tech financing events of 2020 - not that there have been that many. I expect that the opinions on this one will be increasing polarizing over the coming months. Is this the future of insurance or the next WeWork waiting to happen? Or will the market window close up for the Company and the IPO wont even happen? I am not sure. I have read the S-1 and it’s a good one if you are interested in tech / insurance.
“With great power comes great responsibility.”
He has 70% of his portfolio in the Venture Capital asset class! I wish more people did that. This is probably the best post-shutdown economy podcast I have heard so far as far as investing is concerned. We are living in strange times - all things point toward economic disaster, except for the biggest indicator of investor sentiment, the market. There are a lot of good, straightforward theories about what’s going on (Don’t Fight the Fed), but that doesn’t make things any less strange.
Howard Lindzon has another heater.