Weekend Reading & Selected Links

Happy weekend! Here are some links to things I've been reading that you might also enjoy:

1. 'Proof of the impossibility of probabilistic induction', an incredibly neat proof by Vaden Masrani.

2. 'Tulips from Amsterdam', an after-dinner address given by Trevor Sykes at the RBA in 2003. A good yarn, but pre-Goldgar. The closing paragraph of the peroration ("...scientists and engineers do learn from history, and so we have seen heart transplants and men walking on the Moon. But when it comes to finance, every generation starts off afresh with flint axes...”) had me wanting to shout, "But the latter (speculative excess) is precisely because of the former (technological progress), and this is not always bad (see, for example, the work of Carlota Perez)!" By the way, if anyone happens to have a contact for Sykes, I would love to interview him on the podcast.

3. A new review by Joel Mokyr of Deirdre McCloskey's 2020 book Leave Me Alone and I’ll Make You Rich: How the Bourgeois Deal Enriched the World.

4. 'The case for opsimaths. Maybe late bloomers aren't so late', a 2021 Substack post by Henry Oliver, who has now been supported by an Emergent Ventures grant to write a book on the same topic.

5. 'The Cold War Never Ended', a new Foreign Affairs article by Stephen Kotkin.

6. 'Why the Past 10 Years of American Life Have Been Uniquely Stupid', a recent article in The Atlantic by former guest of the pod Jon Haidt.

7. Apple's original business plan, via Daniel Gross. The prediction in the paragraph on the 'Programmable Personal Calculator Market' on Page 5 is especially enlightening.

Have a great Easter, Ramadan, Pesach, or just a great weekend,