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jerryking : oversimplification   7

How to Prepare for the Next Recession: Automate the Rescue Plan
Suppan
San Diego 4h ago
As someone with an engineering background (both education and mindset) this kind of simplistic design of complex systems is very concerning.

If anyone remembers Nassim Tal...
complexity  economic_downturn  ecosystems  howto  letters_to_the_editor  modelling  models  Nassim_Taleb  oversimplification  preparation  recessions 
may 2019 by jerryking
Trump, Kushner and the businessman fallacy
Simon Kuper MARCH 8, 2018
The “businessman fallacy” — the notion that a rich businessman (never a woman) can run government better than a mere politician — is Donald Trump’s basic promise. That’s why the combustion of his son-in-law, fellow real-estate heir and senior adviser Jared Kushner — whose business dealings in the White House scream conflict of interest — is so telling. Kushner incarnates the businessman fallacy.......The businessman-turned-politician is often blinded by hubris. This usually stems from the “money delusion”: the idea that life is a race to make money, and that rich people (“winners”) therefore possess special wisdom.

Many businessmen imagine they pulled themselves up by the bootstraps in a free market, something that more people could do if only there was “less government in business”. This self-image usually omits context: the fact, say, that the businessman’s father built the company (before being jailed on a ridiculous technicality) or that government enforced his contracts and schooled his employees.....Rich Americans tend to feel contempt for politicians because they have learnt to treat them as lowly service providers who will sit up and beg for donations.
self-imagery  Simon_Kuper  Donald_Trump  Jared_Kushner  nepotism  White_House  conflicts_of_interest  oversimplification  privately_held_companies  family-owned_businesses  hubris  generalists  businessman_fallacy  heirs 
march 2018 by jerryking
The Danger of a Single Story - The New York Times
David Brooks APRIL 19, 2016

American politics has always been prone to single storyism — candidates reducing complex issues to simple fables. This year the problem is acute because Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are the giants of Single Storyism. They reduce pretty much all issues to the same single story: the alien invader story....As in life generally, every policy has the vices of its virtues. Aggressive policing cuts crime but increases brutality. There is no escape from trade-offs and tragic situations. The only way forward is to elect people who are capable of holding opposing stories in their heads at the same time, and to reject those who can’t....As F. Scott Fitzgerald once said, “The test of a first-rate mind is the ability to hold two diametrically opposed ideas in your head at the same time.”"
David_Brooks  storytelling  public_policy  single_action_bias  critical_thinking  history  philosophy  skepticism  tradeoffs  oversimplification  criminal_justice_system  incarceration  narratives  dual-consciousness  F._Scott_Fitzgerald 
april 2016 by jerryking
Data Is the World
Aug 1, 2005 | Inc.com | Michael S. Hopkins.

Use your data. "Companies aren't taking advantage of the data they generate, Levitt says. "Often, data generated for one purpose is useful for another. Freakonomics describes the case of an entrepreneur selling bagels in corporate offices who kept meticulous records to track profits and loss—data that eventually yielded insights about white-collar crime and the effects of office size on honesty.
Ask different questions. The abortion-crime link revealed itself when Levitt thought to stop asking what made crime fall and try asking why it had risen so much in the first place. That led him to justice system practices in the 1960s, which led him to a statistical understanding of which individuals were likeliest to commit crimes, and ultimately to the question of why a large segment of that population seemed to have vanished.
Don't mistake correlation for causality. Innovative policing and a drop in crime happened simultaneously, but data proved the one didn't cause the other. (Be mindful of the feudal king who, having learned disease was greatest in regions with the most doctors, figured that reducing doctors would reduce disease.)
Question conventional wisdom. An idea that is both easy to understand and a source of comfort (such as the credit quickly given to innovative policing for cutting crime) should be especially suspect.
Respect the complexity of incentives. "You can't imagine, says Levitt, "all the ways humans will connive to beat a system.
Employ data against cheating. Just as companies don't sufficiently capitalize on the data they have access to, they aren't exploiting what Levitt calls "opportunities to think about fraud or theft in their businesses.
'60s  bank_shots  causality  cheating  conventional_wisdom  correlations  data  data_driven  exhaust_data  Freakonomics  gaming_the_system  incentives  insights  justice_system  massive_data_sets  metadata  oversimplification  questions  skepticism  social_data  Steven_Levitt  theft  think_differently  white-collar_crime 
january 2013 by jerryking
Striking a Balance Between Expertise, Wearing Many Hats - WSJ.com
April 30, 1996 | WSJ | By HAL LANCASTER.
Managers Must Balance Expertise and Generality.

SHOULD TODAY'S managers be generalists or specialists?

Generalists, says the conventional wisdom, because today's shrinking corporations are eliminating so many specialist functions. The people left are in charge of more employees and more departments, managing teams made up of various specialties. Besides, today's hot technological specialty can quickly become obsolete.

As usual, however, the conventional wisdom is an oversimplification. Most people in big companies still advance based on accomplishments in some area of expertise. And to keep up in fast-moving markets, companies often need even deeper levels of expertise than they once did.
Managing_Your_Career  Hal_Lancaster  generalists  specialists  oversimplification  expertise 
december 2012 by jerryking
globeadvisor.com: Living in the real world of finance
December 9, 2011 | G&M | by David Parkinson.
Both a scientist and financial guru, Emanuel Derman warns of relying on mathematical models to predict stock movements. As David Parkinson reports, investors should beware the wild card of human nature...Mr. Derman was in Toronto discussing his new book, Models. Behaving. Badly: Why Confusing Illusion With Reality Can Lead to Disaster, on Wall Street and in Life.

DAVID PARKINSON
boundary_conditions  finance  quantitative  Wall_Street  Colleges_&_Universities  books  physics  models  mathematics  stockmarkets  biases  modelling  dangers  false_confidence  human_factor  stock_picking  illusions  oversimplification  in_the_real_world 
january 2012 by jerryking

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