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jerryking : retrospectives   13

An Obituary Writer Writes One for Himself
April 19, 2019 | WSJ | By James R. Hagerty.

I don’t want what many people seem to consider the standard form for obituaries: A list of names, dates and achievements interspersed with quotes about my nobility, generosity and devotion to family. There will be no speculation about whether I have gone on to an eternal reward.

Instead, I will attempt to answer the three things I try to convey when writing someone else’s obituary: What was he trying to do? Why? And how did it work out?.......Once you resolve to write your own obit, how do you get the job done? My advice is to set aside 15 to 30 minutes once or twice a week until you finish. Don’t fuss about literary flourishes. Just write the story simply, in your own voice. As for structure, I’m going with chronological order. It may not show much imagination, but it provides a clear path for the writer and the reader.
howto  obituaries  retrospectives  writers 
april 2019 by jerryking
After 20 Years of Financial Turmoil, a Columnist’s Last Shot - The New York Times
By GRETCHEN MORGENSON NOV. 10, 2017

For the past 20 years or so, as a business columnist for The New York Times, I’ve had a front-row seat for bull and bear markets, scandals, crises and management mischief.

But I am leaving The Times, and this is my last shot at Fair Game. So it seems a fitting moment to look back at what’s changed and what hasn’t in the financial world, for better or worse.

In addition to a string of garden-variety banking and business scandals, four seismic financial events occurred during my time as a columnist: the collapse of the Long-Term Capital Management hedge fund in 1998, the bursting of the dot-com bubble in 2000, the accounting scandals of Enron in 2001 and WorldCom in 2002, and the mother of them all — the mortgage debacle — in 2008. That one brought world economies to the precipice and wiped out Lehman Brothers and a raft of troubled banks.

......“Sarbanes-Oxley came into effect 15 years ago, and there have been fewer accounting scandals and more accountability,”...It’s too bad that the mortgage crisis six years later didn’t result in heightened accountability.

Here’s another sign of progress: Believe it or not, corporate directors are more active in their oversight than they used to be. Egregious board practices and chummy appointments are less common......Something else that hasn’t changed over the decades is analyst and investor reliance on companies’ creative earnings calculations. These figures, which do not conform to generally accepted accounting practices, typically exclude costs that companies incur in their operations.....Inventive earnings calculations, while more prevalent today, were very popular in the lead-up to the dot-com crash. Back then, analysts valued companies based on imaginative, nonfinancial metrics like the number of page views a retail website received or the percentage of “engaged shoppers” visiting a site. ....My search for truths on Wall Street and elsewhere over the years has sometimes raised hackles. That’s to the good. It wasn’t my job to be part of a company’s spin machine.
financial_communications  farewells  NYT  women  retrospectives  Wall_Street  seismic_shifts  LTCM  bubbles  scandals  SOX  truth-telling  boards_&_directors_&_governance 
november 2017 by jerryking
The youth and confidence are gone, but 40 years later, Canada's still working - The Globe and Mail
ROY MACGREGOR
From Tuesday's Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, Jan. 09, 2007

There was, of course, Expo 67 and the opening of the National Arts Centre, but there were also the Centennial Projects, the commission overseeing the country's 100th birthday agreeing to underwrite some 2,860 of them.

"The construction industry and virtually every community across the nation [as well as Montreal]benefited from Centennial projects," The Beaver reported a decade ago on the effect of Expo 67. "568 recreational centres, 538 parks, 442 community halls, 188 municipal buildings, 144 libraries, museum and art galleries, as well as seven theatres, one UFO landing pad, and one statue of a leprechaun riding a turtle."

Pierre Berton called 1967 The Last Good Year. It wasn't perfect -- French President Charles de Gaulle's visit was a fiasco and the Confederation Train was met by a small riot when it reached Montreal -- but it was probably as close to perfect as this rocky little-big country has ever been.

"A better world seemed to beckon," Berton wrote in his 1997 book on the Centennial. " . . . In 1967 we looked forward with anticipation. In 1997 we look backwards with regret."
retrospectives  1967  Expo_67  Canada  Pierre_Berton  Charles_de_Gaulle 
july 2017 by jerryking
In 1967, the birth of modern Canada - The Globe and Mail
JAN. 02, 2017 | THE GLOBE AND MAIL | DOUG SAUNDERS |

1967 is the hinge upon which modern Canadian history turns and, in certain respects, the key to understanding the challenges of the next half-century.

Today, we live in the country shaped by the decisions and transformations of 1967, far more than by the events of 1867.

Let me make the case, then, that 1967 was Canada’s first good year. We should spend this year celebrating not the 150 th year of Confederation, but the 50th birthday of the new Canada.

But let me also make the case that our conventional story about the birth of second-century Canada is largely wrong. We like to believe that starting in the late 1960s, a series of political decisions, parliamentary votes, court rulings and royal commissions descended upon an innocent, paternalistic, resource-economy Canada and forced upon it an awkward jumble of novelties: non-white immigration, bilingualism, multiculturalism, refugees, indigenous nationhood, liberation of women and gays, the seeds of free trade, individual rights, religious diversity.

But the explosions of official novelty that were launched in and around 1967 weren’t a cause; they were an effect of profound changes that had taken place in Canadians themselves during the two decades after the war, in their thinking and their composition and their attitude toward their country, in Quebec and English Canada and in indigenous communities.


There is a solid line leading from the events of 1967 to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in 1982: It was impossible to have a Canada of multiple peoples, as we discovered was necessary in the late 1960s, without having a Canada of individual people and their rights.

....Individual rights, Quebecois consciousness, indigenous shared-sovereignty status and cultural plurality weren’t the only inevitable outcomes of the 1967 moment. What Canada witnessed over the next two decades was a self-reinforcing spiral of events that often sprung directly from the centennial-era awakening of a postcolonial consciousness.
Doug_Saunders  anniversaries  1967  nostalgia  nationalism  '60s  turning_points  centenaries  pride  Pierre_Berton  Canada  Canada150  national_identity  aboriginals  postcolonial  symbolism  John_Diefenbaker  Lester_Pearson  multiculturalism  Quebecois  Quiet_Revolution  monoculturalism  land_claim_settlements  immigration  royal_commissions  sesquicentennial  Charter_of_Rights_and_Freedoms  Confederation  retrospectives 
january 2017 by jerryking
My President Was Black - The Atlantic
By Ta-Nehisi Coates
Photograph by Ian Allen

JAN/FEB 2017 ISSUE
Ta-Nehisi_Coates  Obama  politics  retrospectives 
december 2016 by jerryking
Lives Lived: John Alan MacNaughton, 68 - The Globe and Mail
Jul. 04 2013 | The Globe and Mail | ALENA SCHRAM.

“We were doubly blessed – as a generation graduating into a Canada of almost limitless opportunities, and as a group of individuals that had been given an enchanted summer as their launching pad.”
obituaries  1967  inspiration  Bay_Street  investment_banking  retrospectives 
july 2013 by jerryking
The Last Good Year
September 29, 1997 | Maclean's | Pierre Berton

https://archive.macleans.ca/article/1997/9/29/the-last-good-year

It was a golden year, and so it seems in retrospect—a year in which we let off steam like schoolboys whooping and hollering at term’s end. We all thought big that year. The symbolic birthday cake on Parliament Hill stood 30 feet high: ice cream and cake for 30,000 kids and hang the expense! Over and over again, we showed the world what Canadians could do: Nancy Greene grabbing the World Cup for skiing; Elaine Tanner, the aquatic Mighty Mouse, taking four medals at the Pan-American Games; Marshall McLuhan on every magazine cover.

By a number of measurements, we are a great deal better off today than we were 30 years ago. We are healthier and we are wealthier than we were in 1967. The real net worth of the average Canadian is almost double what it was back then. Babies born today can expect to live longer—six years more than the centennial crop of babies.

Why, then, do we look back to 1967 as a golden year compared with 1997? If we are better off today, why all the hand-wringing? There are several reasons, but the big one, certainly, is the very real fear that the country we celebrated so joyously 30 years ago is in the process of falling apart. In that sense, 1967 was the last good year before all Canadians began to be concerned about the future of our country.
1967  nostalgia  anniversaries  nationalism  '60s  centenaries  pride  Pierre_Berton  Expo_67  retrospectives  annus_mirabilis  turning_points 
august 2012 by jerryking
From McNamara to Obama - WSJ.com
JULY 8, 2009 | Wall Street Journal | Bret Stephens. "But no
Nobel was required to understand that rationalism isn't a synonym for
reason, much less common sense,"
Bret_Stephens  hubris  Vietnam_War  elitism  rationalism  retrospectives  Robert_McNamara  SecDef 
july 2009 by jerryking

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