Saturday, November 19, 2011

What is man? A miserable little pile of secrets.
--André Malraux, Antimémoires

A new camera captures hundreds of images and lets you choose your own reality Creative expression is a wonderful thing. It makes you feel alive. Small wonder then, that one of the most enduring forms of self-expression, writing, should turn out to be good for our physical and emotional health. So next time you’re feeling down or out of sorts – write it up! Real stories come from the successes and failures, joys and sorrows of everyday life. And 20 years of research tells us that devoting 15 minutes each day to writing about what we’ve experienced , felt or dwelt on can help improve almost any ailment, body or mind. Write the wrongs ; Putting pen to paper can reap surprising health benefits Time is a river, a violent cold current of events...

Never underestimate the role of the will in the artistic life. Some writers are all will. Talent you can dispense with, but not will. Will is paramount. Not joy, not delight, but grim application.
--Alan Bennett, The Habit of Art

Happy Scribing Sometimes Even to Live is an Act of Courage
Stock analysts are not known for being a rebellious sort. Their jobs generally involve writing up dry technical reports on public companies. But Mike Mayo is not your typical stock analyst.

Since joining the industry nearly 25 years ago, Mayo has shaken up the financial world with his bold and forthright analysis of the banks he researches. In 1999, he told investors to sell all bank stocks. In 2007, he was ahead of the pack in downgrading Bear Stearns Cos. and Citigroup Inc.
Perhaps predictably, this hasn't earned him a lot of love, given that he has worked at banks himself and that his employers wanted to do business with many of the banks he was analyzing. This led to often short and stormy tenures at UBS, Credit Suisse and Lehman Bros. before he landed in his current position at Credit Agricole Securities.
Now, after a financial crisis for which banks have taken much of the blame, Mayo has written a book, "Exile on Wall Street," chronicling the problems he sees with the procedures in place for monitoring the financial system. He contends that regulators, accountants and credit rating firms do not have the right incentives to serve as good watchdogs. He slams his fellow stock analysts for providing misleadingly positive portrayals of public companies because of conflicts of interests.

Watchdogs ; [It is a deep irony that FAMU student Jan Látal's newest documentary is titled Paroubek of a Thousand Faces. The finished product, admits the 31-year-old director, fails to uncover the "real" politician and erstwhile prime minister of 16 months. In fact, Jiří Paroubek wore his "politician's face" for the duration of the shoot, Látal says. Politician has a face for all occasions ; Only two-thirds of Czechs proud of their nationality - poll Only two-thirds ]
• · Having charted Billy Beane’s sports-management breakthrough in the best-selling Moneyball. Billy Beane’s sports-management revolution, chronicled by the author in Moneyball, was made possible by Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky. At 77, with his own new book, Thinking, Fast and Slow, the Nobel Prize-winning Kahneman reveals the built-in kinks in human reasoning—and he’s Exhibit A. Michael Lewis on the King of Human Error ; In novel after novel, he floats lofty, universal ideas, and then unzips his fly. The Grapes of Roth: Solipsism and lust
• · · Pakistan lies to us, sponsors militants who attack American troops, and may have knowingly harbored Osama bin Laden. With a friend like this, who needs enemies? The Ally From Hell; Kurt Vonnegut wrote - We are what we pretend to be so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.” He heeded his own advice The novelist and master of self-marketing became an icon of the counterculture
• · · · Fire snowball mask movie: how leaders spark and sustain change, Peter Fuda and Richard Badham, Harvard Business Review, November 2011, p145-148. Transform to become an effective leader using interdependent metaphors - fire (representing ambition), snowball (accountability) , mask (authenticity and movie (self-reflection). It takes utter courage to name the mask.; Going to work is a high-pressure business! Between the state of economic challenges, your personal issues and family concerns—it’s easy to overlook the value of a forgotten virtue called courage (and its intrinsic value). Courageous Leadership—Dare to Take Control
• · · · · Three dead at Moravian factory as gunman was brother of arms dealer Karel Musela opened fire at the Aircraft Industries (AI) plant, killing Pavel Vlach and Petr Veselý, both members of the company's board, and injuring director Ilona Plškova, before turning the gun on himself; A libertarian economist discovers that our political leanings leave us more biased than we think. I Was Wrong, and So Are You
• · · · · · A rose by any other name might smell as sweet, but anyone with even a poor sense of smell and negligible knowledge of botany will have noticed that some roses smell sweeter than others. The same goes for the names of books. As some titles evidently smell particularly sweet, there can be some rather unexpected bookish twins. Inside Books: What’s in a name?; Italian clothing company Benetton withdraws publicity shot of Benedict XVI kissing grand sheikh of al-Azhar mosque in Cairo