No Hot Links this morning because there are two really crucial things I need you to get through and they’re both on the long side.
Michael Lewis is out with his newest piece for Vanity Fair and it will scare the shit out of you. There is practically no one overseeing nuclear weapons, nuclear material, hazardous nuclear cleanups or the threats of stolen nuclear material from around the world. These jobs are part of the Department of Energy’s mission, but its hundreds of thousands of staffers are without direction. There is no effort being made on the part of the new administration to even learn what the Dept does. The previous DoE head was a nuclear physicist. The new DoE head is Rick Perry of Dancing With The Stars fame. A man who runs on the treadmill with a gun on his hip (he said this). No one giving anyone marching orders. And every deliberately sadistic budget cut being proposed by know-nothings threatens us further.
Indeed, if you are seeking to preserve a certain worldview, it actually helps to gut science.
Please find the time for this:
Howard Marks put out his newest memo, and it’s essentially a warning based on numerous anecdotes he sees around capital markets right now, from the FANG phenomenon to digital currency adoption to indexing and ETFs. He’s saying to be cautious. He’s also admitting he’s been saying to be cautious since 2011, six years ago, so that might not matter much.
Since I’ve written so many cautionary memos, you might conclude that I’m just a born worrier who eventually is made to be right by the operation of the cycle, as is inevitable given enough time. I absolutely cannot disprove that interpretation.
But still, the memo is loaded with insights and worth reading. I’m 50/50 right now as far as whether or not I want to write something in response…