Meditations – Encouragement 

“When you need encouragement, think of the qualities the people around you have: this one’s energy, that one’s modesty, another’s generosity, and so on. Nothing is as encouraging as when virtues are visibly embodied in the people around us, when we’re practically showered with them. It’s good to keep this in mind.”

Meditations – Good and Bad

“You take things you don’t control and define them as “good” or “bad.” And so of course when the “bad” things happen, or the “good” ones don’t, you blame the gods and feel hatred for people responsible–or those you decide to make responsible. Much of our bad behavior stems from trying to apply those criteria. If we limited “good” and “bad” to our actions, we’d have no call to challenge God, or to treat other people as enemies.” – Marcus Aurelius

The Third Wave

One quote that resonated with me from Steve Case’s book The Third Wave.

“It will never be easier or cheaper to gain market share.”

“If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb

Sunday Morning

Reading Meditations. Favorite idea of the morning “It’s truth I am after, and the truth never harmed anyone. What harms us is to persist in self-deceit and ignorance.”

Read an article about how Warren Buffett invests the float from his insurance business in t-bills. Found that in the midninties a 10yr t-bill paid 8%! That’s crazy. 10yr notes are paying 1.5% right now. I feel like frugal cash paying business owners did better in the past. I could have killed it in that environment. 

Kelli and I are going to start a virtues scorecard like Ben Franklin. I read in Titan the John D Rockefeller biography that character scorecards were very popular in the 19th century. 

Putting a offer in on 20 acres of farm land. Ag is down right now, and as a value investor, we buy on the low.

Meditations Part I

Reading Marcus Aurelius Meditations this morning. Favorite thought thus far: “Like seeing roasted meat and other dishes in front of you and suddenly realizing: This is a dead fish. A dead bird. A dead pig. Or that noble vintage is grape juice, and the purple robes are sheep wool dyed with shellfish blood. Perceptions like that–latching onto things and piercing through them, so we see what they really are.”

I tried this exercise while sitting in my reading chair. Most objects that I observed in my room are from China. Cheaply made from materials that will not last longer than 10 years. But I did notice a few items that I or my wife had made by hand. Those few items conjured up feelings that transcended the material components of the items. The manzanita bush that we made for our wedding. The paintings we found in Europe. The kitchen table my dad and I made. 

Quotes from The Most Important Thing

“The worst loans are made at the best of times.” – The Economist 
“The fundamental business of the country is on a sound and prosperous basis.” – President Herbert Hoover two days before the 29′ crash
“The air goes out of a balloon much faster than when it went in.”

“What the wise man does in the beginning, the fool does in the end.”